Monday, February 9, 2009

February 9th Budget Questions and Answers

Here are seven (7) questions sent to me. Please send your questions via email or comment on this blog.

1. If I lose my job in May before a state budget is passed, will I get my job back in the event of the state’s budget getting back on track? Answer: When you are laid off, you are placed on a 39 months rehire list. Rehires are made in the reverse order of layoff. You have rights of re-employment for any position that becomes available for which you qualify.

2. Are temporary teachers counted in the number of layoff? Answer: No. Temporary teachers are given a one year contract and are not placed on the seniority list. Temporary teachers are generally funded by categorical programs and are subject to reduction based on categorical funding.

3. Can any administrator, regardless of hire date, bump a certificated employee? Answer: No. Administrators who initially worked as a teacher in the District retain their seniority date based on their hire date as a teacher. Administrators who were not teachers in the District can earn up to, and no more than, three years of seniority as a teacher.

4. What is the protocol regarding teachers with the same hire date. How does credentialing and units play into it? Answer: The Board will consider a resolution at the next meeting to establish the criteria to determine the order for same day hires. The resolution includes the following criteria:
1. Breadth of credential(s)
2. Teaching experience at different grade levels
3. Teaching experience in different subject areas
4. Professional preparation (i.e., advanced degrees, continuing education in assignment related subject areas)
5. Teaching experience at more than one school site within the District
6. Teaching experience outside of the District
7. Random order selection (when all other factors are equal)

5. Will only elementary teachers with multiple subjects be considered for potential layoff? What about single subject teachers? Answer: No. The current resolution that will go to the Board on the 17th includes the following:

  • 33 FTE- Multiple Subject (33 FTE identified for elimination; Additional 13 FTE displaced under bumping rights)
  • 7 FTE- Music
  • 4 FTE- Art
  • 2 FTE- Librarians
  • 1 FTE- Counselor
  • 2 FTE- Deans
  • 1- K-5 Assistant Principal
  • 1- BTSA Teacher
  • .85- FTE- AT & G Pullout K-5
  • 5 FTE- Instructional Facilitators
  • 3 FTE- 6th Grade (Middle School) Electives

6. What are the incentives for early retirement? Will the March 1st deadline for notice of retirement be extended? Answer: Currently there are no plans for early retirement incentives. We have had three inquiries to this concept and we will continue to consider it in the weeks to come. The March 1st deadline to inform the District of retirement, in order to receive post-retirement health benefits, can be extended by mutual agreement with SEA.

7. Is it certain that there will be an elimination of Art/Music teachers in grades K-5? Answer: No. We are only opening our options due to the March 15th deadline. However, it will more likely be necessary if the State does not grant the District broad flexibility in the use of categorical funds.


Matthew's Father said...

I only see one FTE Administrator, and even that person is someone who directly works with students. How can you honestly place this many people in harms way with only one administrative position being considered. You are as corrupt as our state legislature if you move forward with this nonsense. I moved to Modesto from San Jose specifically due to "Sylvan Schools." My son has attended Mary Ann Sanders since its opening, and I think what is being done to us is horrible and I won't stand for it!

Kiesels' mom said...

Why aren't we hearing of the same crisis and potential cuts with regard to Modesto City Schools? Are we being required to make bigger cuts or are they just not getting any press?

Phil Shafer said...

The State of California does not have the will nor resources to take over this district. This school board is admirable but is wrong to not stand up for its employees. They are honorable, but honorable people sided with the King of England in 1776. This problem presents our School Board a chance to show uncommon courage and show the State they have backbone. I will support my children and my district and choose to help even though I disagree.

Anonymous said...

As a school board your duties are to represent our children and have their best interests in mind. How can you state that you are living up to your duties when you are willing to sacrifice the future leaders of our community by laying off our teachers? By increasing our class sizes our children will suffer the consequences, leaving many children in the dark within their educational needs. As a board you need to consider heavier cuts at the top levels and keep intact those teachers working directly with our students. Our students need your protection in order to ensure they have a successful future in our society.

Concerned Community Member said...

I attended your Special Board Meeting as a concerned community member. I walked away wondering if you as a board really value your teachers. You choose to hand out pink notices to the very teachers that make the Sylvan District what it is today. Why do you choose to cut teachers over administrators. How many administrators do you need with a shrinking staff? Are they going to make themselves available to help teach a class of 30 plus first graders? I foresee having that many young children in a classroom with only one teacher and no aides a real safety issue. Before classroom size reduction, you had aides in the room to assist the teacher. You need to stop and assess how the students' learning environment will change drastically under these proposed conditions? Stanislaus County currently has a high level of illiterate community members. How do you think this catastrophe you have proposed in education will affect this rate in 15 years? I really think the board needs to look into other possibilities before jumping so quickly to eliminate classroom teachers.