Assistant Superintendent of Schools for Personnel Ann Israel gave a presentation on proposed staffing for the 2000-2001 school year, at the Feb. 1 BOE meeting. She advised that approximately 22 additional teachers, including full and part-time positions, will be needed to accommodate, amongst other things, the increasing enrollment. "I've already substantially cut the number of requests for additional teachers," she stated.
She pointed out that the enrollment increase hits the 7th grade next year and said that staffing for the upper grade levels is harder than staffing for elementary schools.
She noted, too , that while an increase in the student population is a factor, its impact at each grade level on class size also affects the number of sections that are needed.
The estimated cost for the additional 22 teachers, based on a $50,000 annual salary with 23-25 percent additional in benefits, will add approximately $1.4 million to the instructional budget.
However, by bringing several special education students back to the district, rather than paying for placing them in out-of-district BOCES classes, the district is saving a substantial amount of money, approximately a $600,000 net savings.
The need for additional teachers is driven by other factors as well, stated Ms. Israel. Programatically, the district will be initiating what's been termed academic intervention services, which needs staffing. This new service will help at risk students meet the new academic standards set forth by the state.
In addition, pupil personnel services (i.e. guidance, speech/language, psychology, special ed.) have to be increased. This is due, in part, to the fact that the district is bringing back some of the special education pupils from out-of-district placements. Two additional self-contained special education classes will be created.
External influences, like the district's commitment to school climate and safety issues and drug free schools, in addition to state requirements and individual student's needs for various services, also contribute to the need for increased staff.
Ms. Israel gave a school by school breakdown of current and projected enrollments and the preliminary proposals for staffing changes for next year.
Current enrollment: 428 with 23 sections. Projected enrollment: 445 with 24 sections
Special area staffing: Math- .5; Special education- .6; speech- .2.
Daly staffing change 2.3.
Current enrollment: 595 with 29 (28 + 1 special ed.) sections. Projected enrollment-610 with 31 sections 29 + 2 special ed.)
Special area staffing: Math- .5; special education- .6; speech- .5; guidance- .2; psychologist- .4.
Guggenheim staffing change 4.2.
Current enrollment: 525 with 26 sections. Projected enrollment- 548 with 28 sections.
Special area staffing: art- .2; guidance- .2; speech- .2; math- .5; special education- .6; music- .2; physical education- .4.
Manorhaven staffing change 4.3.
Current enrollment: 610 with 31 sections. Projected enrollment- 608 with 30 sections.
Special area staffing: speech- .2; math- .5; special education- .4; music- .2.
Sousa staffing change .3.
Current enrollment is 958 (Grade 6-348; Grade 7-291; Grade 8-319).
Projected enrollment is 996 (Grade 6-338; Grade 7-363; Grade 8-295)
Staffing implications total 7 more teachers in the following areas: English +1; math +1; social studies +1; foreign language +1; special education +2; speech/language +.2; tech. ed. +.4; guidance +.4.
Current enrollment 1,161 (Grade 9- 308; Grade 10-304; Grade 11-270; Grade 12-281)
Projected enrollment 1,210 (Grade 9-340; Grade 10-311; Grade 11- 295; Grade 12-264) Also includes a new self-contained special education class.
Staffing implications total 4.2 more teachers in the following areas: English+ .4; Math + .4; science +.4; social studies +.4; foreign language + 1; special education + .6; alternative high school +.4; tech education +.2; psychologist + .4.
Elementary 183.8 194.0
Middle School 95.5 102.8
High School 125.2 128.4
District wide 6.3 6.3
Total: 411.1 433.4
-"Where are we going to put them?" a few board members asked rhetorically.
Board member Alan Baer suggested that the district get a jump on securing portables for September, as they've done in the past.
-In view of the increased enrollment, board member Sandy Ehrlich asked about the lack of additional library staff, especially with Guggenheim and Sousa with an over 600 student enrollment. She also asked about additional PEP teachers for the larger elementary schools. She pointed out that the students at the larger schools cannot be getting the same amount of instruction/attention that their classmates in the smaller schools are getting.
In the same vein, board member Nancy Cowles voiced concern over the fact that the biggest elementary school has only one art teacher.
Ms. Israel replied that she too had concerns and would revisit this item. But, she did note that the numbers don't show the redeployment of part-time teaching staff, which should help make the distribution of special area teachers more equitable among the schools.
- Concerned about the need to open up an additional section in order to maintain class size in one of the elementary schools that is already hard-pressed for space, board member Alan Baer asked that the superintendent consider using his power to route incoming students to the Sousa School.
The next steps are board review, program considerations, budget hearings and then the final recommendations will be made.