Hamilton County commission, school board to hold joint meeting on educational issues
Hamilton County educators continue to express their frustration with the school's budget.
It comes after a heated town hall meeting on Sunday night.
Hamilton County teachers voiced their concerns in front of the school board and a portion of the commission.
Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger and Superintendent Dr. Bryan Johnson have agreed to host a joint meeting with the county commission and school board in December.
The meeting will allow commissioners and school board members to discuss educational issues.
John DeVore is a sixth-grade teacher at Hixson Middle School.
"It's frustrating because I feel like I should be focusing on my classroom and not on my compensation," DeVore said.
He makes about $44,000 a year with six years of experience and a master's degree.
"Obviously what we would like to see happen is for the school board and county commission to come to an agreement to address compensation for teachers," DeVore said.
This comes after the Hamilton County Commission voted down a 34-cent property tax increase in the summer.
The extra funds would have gone toward a 5% pay increase for teachers.
In October, county commissioners voted down a 60-dollar wheel tax referendum that would have given teachers a pay raise.
Instead, educators received a one-time bonus of $1,500.
"It was a compromise," DeVore said. "We needed the staff as much as we need compensation."
State Senator Todd Gardenhire said these teachers should take their concerns to the school board.
"They [school board] makes that decision," Gardenhire said. "The county commission doesn't make that decision, the state doesn't make that decision, now if they want us to make that decision, we will be glad to but I don't think they want us to make that decision."
DeVore did not agree.
"We went to the school board," DeVore said. "The school board presented a budget the budget was rejected to the county commission."
County commissioners and school board members will discuss these educational issues during a meeting at Red Bank Middle School on December 9.
The meeting will start at 6 p.m. The public is invited to attend.