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Alderman Rosseel calls for BEP action and Nowell endorses Williams for alderman

Alderman Rosseel calls for BEP action

As we are all well aware, there has been a growing discussion in Knox County and across the State concerning how to provide the highest quality education for our children. Last month, Gov. [Phil] Bredesenís State-of-the-State address focused entirely on education issues. In Knox County, the Board of Education and school administrators have been working on a broad range of education issues including early learning and small-learning communities so as to improve academic achievement and to decrease drop-out rates. Additionally, the Board of Education, County Mayor [Mike] Ragsdale, and the County Commission have focused on funding and the need for new and improved facilities to address the issues of overcrowding and ensuring that our children have the best environment in which to learn.

Funding for education comes in two parts, the local contribution and the state contribution that is determined by the Basic Education Program. The BEP was created as a result of a lawsuit against the State of Tennessee approximately 15 years ago to provide more equitable funding for rural schools that lack the resources to fund quality education.

The BEP is a very complicated formula that is intended to account for each countyís ability to fund education based in part on its tax base. In practice, it has resulted in the four large urban county school systems receiving much less funding than the state average. It is not clear, however, that the formula takes fully into account the higher wage and benefit requirements for employees, increased cost of goods and services, higher cost of property for school facilities and support services, and other requirements that generally increase the cost of school operations in an urban


For example, Knox County receives $800 less per school-age child for education than the state average and our county schools are near the bottom of the list in state funding received. Knox County also receives $400 less per school-age child than Williamson County, the twelfth richest county in the United States.

In response to these concerns, the Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen unanimously passed a resolution Feb. 22 requesting that the governor and our elected representatives amend the BEP to be more equitable to school districts in urban areas, particularly Knox County.

In concert with the Knox County Board of Education, County Mayor Ragsdale, and your Fifth District Commissioners, the Board of Mayor and Aldermen requests that you contact the governor and your state representatives asking them to redouble their support of a better approach to the distribution of State funding for local education.


Tom Rosseel


Ward 1 (North) Farragut

Gov. Phil Bredesen

Tennessee State Capitol

Nashville, TN 37243-0001

Phone: 615-741-2001

Fax: 615.532.9711


Sen. Tim Burchett

310A War Memorial Building

Nashville, TN 37243-0207

Phone 615-741-1766

Email: sen.tim.burchett@

Sen. Jamie Woodson

317 War Memorial Bldg.

Nashville, TN 37243-0206

Phone: 615-741-1648

Fax: 615-253-0270

Email: sen.jamie.woodson@

Rep. Park M. Strader

214 War Memorial Building

Nashville, TN 37243-0114

Phone: 615-741-2264

Email: rep.park.strader@

Rep. Joe Armstrong

Email: rep.joe.armstrong@

Rep. Harry Brooks

Email: rep.harry.brooks@

Rep. Stacey Campfield

Email rep.stacey.campfield@

Rep. Bill Dunn

Email: rep.bill.dunn@

Rep. Frank Nicely

Email: rep.frank.nicely@

Rep. Harry Tindell

Email: rep.harry.tindell@

Nowell endorses Williams for alderman

I am writing to offer my full support of John Williams for alderman in the April 10 election. I have known John and his family for many years and cannot think of a better representative for the town of Farragut.

I have worked with John professionally and can attest that he is a man of integrity and honesty. John has a vision for Farragut that includes enhancing the desirability of the community, as well as, amplifying our schools.

His platform position on promoting business will ensure that our town will evolve into the next century.

My family and I have lived and worked in the town of Farragut for many years and consider ourselves blessed to be in such a wonderful community.

The town of Farragut is a great community but many challenges are facing us in the future. We need strong leadership and an alderman that is up to facing these difficult challenges.

John can offer such leadership while listening to the concerns of the townís people. I encourage everyone to go to Johnís website and read his platform.

I know that you will be just as excited about his plans and visions for the future of Farragut as I am.

Dr. Walker E. Nowell



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