Clay Community School Corporation Supt. Dan Schroeder asked those in attendance to list cost cutting ideas that would also go along with the ideas submitted at the building level.
"Tonight, we are looking at ways to cut costs that do not include personnel or benefits," Schroeder said. "We want to start with ways to save money that would not affect classroom instruction first."
For 30 minutes, groups made up of administrators, community members and teachers discussed and brainstormed ideas that could potentially save the corporation money.
"Putting ads on the school homepages, baseball field or the gym" Clay City Jr./Sr. High School Principal Jeff Bell suggested. "Any high visibility place. You don't want to see it come to that, but let's face it, a Saturday night baseball game can fund your athletic department."
As groups continued to give their cost savings presentations, many of the same ideas continued to be mentioned such as:
* Changing the lighting to motion sensors in low traffic areas,
* Selling ad space on buses,
* Incentives for teachers to not take days off and reducing the money spent on substitutes,
* Using computers instead of textbooks,
* Charging a fee for students to use APEX,
* Eliminate unused equipment or furniture,
* Eliminate paper checks,
* Eliminate the shuttle bus,
* Eliminate colored paper,
* Pursue more grant more grants,
* More webinars or teleconferencing to eliminate driving to a conferences and having substitutes,
* Having a four-day work week for all students and staff,
* Pay to play for extra-curricular activities,
* Eliminate personal properties such as coffee pots,
* Consolidate non-instructional facilities, and
* Health Insurance options.
"One of the things we talked about was how Evansville schools did all of this a couple of years ago," Northview High School Principal Tim Rayle said. "Contact them to see what they have done and view their plan so we can see if there are things that we can do to adapt it to our needs."
The second question Schroeder proposed was should the corporation spend down their cash balance before making personnel cuts, and if so, how far should the cash balance go down. He also asked if the cash balance is spent, should the money in the Rainy Day Fund be used before personnel cuts are made.
"Our group believes we should spend down the general fund to 10 percent before making personnel cuts," Van Buren Elementary Principal Gail Williams said. "Then, if we need to, make more cuts then we should spend stimulus money first, leave teacher retirement alone."
Not all groups reached a consensus.
"We talked about spending down the cash balance but couldn't agree on an amount," Data and Food Service Director Carolyn Kumpf said.
The majority of the committee agreed, that keeping teachers in the classroom was the main goal.
The next meeting of the Cost Cutting Committee will be at 6 p.m., Nov. 1, in the Media Center at North Clay Middle School.