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NCSS hopes for stimulus package help

COVINGTON - Officials at the Newton County School System are hoping that next week they should expect to get a little financial relief.

NCSS Superintendent Steven Whatley said the system might receive "several million dollars" from the federal economic stimulus package.

"We don't know the details yet, but we have a session Monday with the state school Superintendent (Kathy Cox)," Whatley said at the Newton County Board of Education meeting Tuesday night.

He said the school system could receive the extra federal funding to use for two programming areas: Title I, an already federally funded area that serves a high population of economically disadvantaged students, and IDEA, which services individuals with disabilities in education.

According to Recovery.gov, the Web site set up to allow the public to track where the federal stimulus package money will go, $53 billion will help education and training in the United States. Georgia schools are expected to receive $150 million in federal stimulus money for educational programs.

Whatley did not comment further on the effects of receiving stimulus money.

NCSS officials have worked this year to cut millions of dollars from its original $161 million budget for this school year to prepare for a budget shortfall due to a reduction is state funding and taxes; to prepare for next school year's anticipated cuts and reduction in tax revenue, NCSS had to cut more than $4 million in staff salaries.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

Michelle Floyd can be reached at michelle.floyd@newtoncitizen.com.