In a preliminary ballot, the Baltimore City Council voted yesterday to restore $1.6 million to the city education budget, two weeks after it had eliminated the money to pressure school administrators to spend more money in classrooms and less at the North Avenue headquarters.
Council resistance to the outlay faded after deputy school superintendent J. Edward Andrews Jr. told the council that the new school budget already has eliminated 34 North Avenue administrative positions and includes an additional $3.5 million in spending at the school level.
Mr. Andrews said further cuts to the administration budget would tie the hands of the incoming superintendent and would disrupt the department's ability to plan and carry out a school-board-mandated restructuring designed to shift greater authority to individual schools.
Councilman Joseph T. "Jody" Landers, D-3rd, who led the budget-cutting charge at a June 18 council meeting, said the council should not restore the money until it has assurances that more resources will reach the schools.
The additional $3.5 million that school officials say will reach individual schools in the fiscal 1992 budget due to start July 1 includes $2.1 million for computers to teach reading skills in 38 elementary schools, $800,000 to hire a part-time assistant principal or pay for other instructional improvements in 39 schools and $35,000 to each of 14 schools that are participating in a pilot program, Mr. Andrews said.