Three music and art teachers were cut from the elementary school level during the board meeting held Tuesday May 1.
I'm also going to propose that several positions that are going to be vacated at the end of the year not be filled, but that's up to the board, Williams said.
"This has been very toiling, and there have been a lot of sleepless nights," Williams said. "These are people with mortgages and kids in college."
A special session school board meeting has been scheduled for Monday, May 14 at 6 p.m. in the Cedartown High School Cafeteria were a reduction enforcement plan will be explained.
Previously reported:Around 130 members of the community showed up to the regular session school board meeting Tuesday night anxious to learn the fate of various school programs and jobs as the district faced additional budget cuts.
A number of rumors surrounded the board meeting, but few answers were immediately available.
"How has the budget come to this?" Carolyn Williams of Polk County asked.
Williams protested the recent hiring of a personnel director outside of the main office stating the money budgeted for the position could have paid the starting salaries of two teachers.
Several teachers and staff members including Dorothy Welch, of Cedartown Middle School suggested changing to a four day school week as a possible alternative to cutting programs and laying off staff.
Welch pointed to an article detailing the switch to the four day week Chattooga County schools as an alternative layoffs and cutting CTAE programs.
Several students were present to protest the cuts as well. Courtney, a student at Rockmart High School said several of her teachers had already received notices that they would no longer have a job next school year.
Alan Melson, director of Financial services said Polk School District has lost over $31 million in austerity cuts over the last 11 years.
"We've lost an average of $2.8 million per year," Melson said. "In addition, the local tax digest has decreased resulting in a shortfall of approximately $600,000 this year."
Melson also pointed to rising costs, such as employee insurance, which is slated to increase by $400,000 over the next three years as additional strains on the budget.
During the meeting, the school board slashed over $260,000 off next year's budget in a series of unanimous votes.
*Reducing the textbook fund by $50,000
*Eliminating the student accident insurance coverage ($58,650)
*Reducing the staff development fund by $60,000
*Reducing the instruction supplies fund by $64,000
*Eliminating the instructional equipment fund ($5,000)
*Eliminating the discretionary fund ($25,000)
A recommendation was then brought before the board to reduce the 2012-2013 calendar to 170 days. The motion passed 7-1 with Jane Holbrooks, Grady McCrickard, Susan Berry, Dan Forsyth, Andy Fariel, Tim Turner and Chuck Thaxton voting for and Tommy Sanders voting against.
The calendar reduction will save the district an additional $163,289.
Other agenda items voted on were to accept low bids to make renovations to restrooms at Eastside Elementary and Northside Elementary and to make required updates to bus camera and radio equipment. These votes fall under the current FY 2012 budget.
Pinson was selected by unanimous vote as the low bidder at $121,000 to make necessary renovations to Eastside Elementary.
Earley was selected by unanimous vote to make renovations at Northside Elementary for $19,721.
Angel Trax HDX was selected by unanimous vote to upgrade bus equipment for $27,674.