New budget opens new opportunities

Natalie Gordon, Sports Editor

Jackson-Reed has received additional funding for the 2023-24 school year to keep up with the growing student body, which will be used in part to hire new staff members. Positions being added include teachers, psychologists, and a dean of students.

However, Jackson-Reed will be receiving one less special education teacher due to a decline in the number of students that need this special care. 

“There were four budget priorities that really stood out,” Principal Brown said. “Academic support, equity, support in the social-emotional area and (post-secondary planning).” 

Brown explained that these issues were raised during several meetings with students, faculty, and staff as well as additional feedback received from the parent survey. 

The positions were also implemented to address overcrowding issues and alleviate the load of some counselors and social workers with multiple students. 

“Some students are sitting in classes of 30-40 people,” Brown said. He noted that the physics classes were larger, and another physics teacher was hired. 

The money for these new positions comes directly from the DCPS budget which allots Jackson-Reed $28.9 million this year. 

“This money is largely based off of our enrollment,” Brown said. According to Brown, enrollment projection for next year will be slightly higher than what was projected for this year, at 2,192 students. 

This budget decision comes despite the opening of McArthur in the fall which is supposed to help alleviate the overcrowding issues. But overall, the budget positions aim to increase the current student aid. 

“We need the staff to support [the current student body],” Brown said.