The Oak Grove Board of Education approved the preliminary budget Monday. The estimated revenues are $18.63 million while the expenditures are $19.26 million. This leaves a deficit of $628,916, which will come out of its reserve fund.

The Oak Grove School District will be spending more than it makes during the 2010-11 school year.

The Oak Grove Board of Education approved the preliminary budget Monday. The estimated revenues are $18.63 million while the expenditures are $19.26 million. This leaves a deficit of $628,916, which will come out of its reserve fund.

“School districts are not like any other business because we have to have a budget for the next year by June 30,” Superintendent Freddie Doherty said. “But what makes it complicated is we do not know 100 percent what our revenues will be. We also have to anticipate our expenditures for next year. That is why we make adjustments throughout the year.”

Among the cuts made for next year include the loss of one administrative position, the elimination for seven full-time teaching positions and the elimination of two non-certified positions. Two full-time teaching positions will become part time.

Teachers and other staff will be allowed to move across on the salary schedule if additional college hours have been earned, but there will be no increase to the base salary. It will remain at $33,600.

Other changes include a decrease in professional development funds, a reduction in supplies, the elimination of after-school care on non-attendance days and a reduction of sports programs at the middle school level.

Doherty said the budget does take into consideration that the foundation formula, the state’s main funding mechanism for schools, will not be fully funded. It also takes into account a $40,000 decrease in transportation funding from the state.

Left in the budget, however, will be the school district’s portion of Career Ladder, which is about $180,000. Career Ladder pays for hours teachers accumulate during the school year in areas such as tutoring and mentoring.

The state and public school districts in Missouri split the cost of Career Ladder. But currently, the Missouri Legislature is discussing eliminating funding for the program next year.

“If the economy gets better, then our numbers will be better. If there is an economic downward spiral, then our numbers will be far worse,” Doherty said. “We are bringing in less money, but providing the same services to our students and families.”