Fri., August 7, 2009 2:45pm (EDT)

Teacher Furloughs Loom as School Year Begins for Richmond County
By Noel Brown
Updated: 5 years ago

AUGUSTA, Ga.   —  
Teachers in Richmond County will be spending more personal time on work as a result of mandatory furloughs. (photo courtesy Sir Mildred Pierce)
Teachers in Richmond County will be spending more personal time on work as a result of mandatory furloughs. (photo courtesy Sir Mildred Pierce)
It’s the first day of school for students in Richmond County and this year marks the first time in decades that Georgia teachers have been required to furlough.

That comes after Governor Sonny Perdue cut school budgets in an amount equal to three furlough days in an effort to deal with a $900 million budget shortage.

Now teachers at many Augusta schools will be forced to stay home on a designated staff development day in February. The rest of the furlough time will be made up by teachers working 15 minutes less each day.

That means teachers will have to spend more personal time preparing for the school year.

Will Christman teaches high school social studies at The Academy of Richmond County. He says he is thankful to still have his job and that putting in time off the clock is something he is more than willing to do.

"It takes a certain amount of time to get something done. Just because I have less of a work day to try to compensate for that I still have to grade and read through essays and I know how much time that takes me to do."

In addition to the furlough day teachers are taking a four day pay cut.