NASD must make adjustments

Published 1:03 am Friday, May 18, 2018

The findings of a recent study presented at Tuesday’s Natchez-Adams School District meeting shed light on the school district’s staffing and spending.

The study found that NASD has more administrators than 10 similar school districts in the state.

In fact, only one of the comparable school districts, Sunflower County with 44 administrators, had more administrators than NASD with 43.

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The good news in that bit of information is that NASD’s administrative salaries are $6,000 to $7,000 lower than the average administrative salaries in the 10 districts.

And, the study indicated, NASD’s $1.8 million spending on administrative costs is more than any of the other school districts in the study. The next highest administrative costs came in the Sunflower County school district, which spent $1.6M in administrative costs.

While it is good that the NASD salaries are lower than most of those other districts, the take away for us is that NASD has too many administrators and overall administrative costs are too high.

The other important findings from the study were that principals in the NASD are underpaid compared to the other school districts in the study.

NASD’s higher administrative costs appear to come from some positions in the district that are paid as administrators but that are not actually administrative positions, including some academic coaching positions.

Streamlining NASD’s administrative costs should be a priority for the district, but the focus should not be on providing more service but better quality services. Principals should be paid adequate salaries because, as the study points out, they are the ones who make decisions on hiring the best teachers and budgeting for essential school equipment such as computers and books.

We urge the school board to get busy aligning the district’s administrative positions with comparable districts in the state, sooner, rather than later.