Seven deans whose positions were eliminated under the budget deficit reduction plan will be recalled, but teachers who retire or resign may not be replaced, the school board decided Monday.
In February, the board voted to to erase a projected $3.2 million deficit in the 2012-13 budget. The layoffs included seven deans (one at each high school and one at , and Aux Sable middle schools), which would have saved about $452,800, district officials said.
On Monday, the board voted 5-2 to bring back the deans. Board member Michael Kelly and board Secretary Eric Gallt voted against the motion.
Supt. John Harper also advised the board that the deans positions should remain eliminated as part of the deficit reduction plan.
Board members in support of restoring the jobs said the deans serve as mentors and coaches for students, and sometimes they're a student’s last opportunity to get on the right track before they graduate.
Board President Roger Bonuchi said he also wanted to ensure the district had minority deans to help represent the district’s diverse student population.
Gallt said if the positions remained cut, the district would still remain comparable to other districts with similar dean-to-student ratios. By bringing back the seven positions, he said, the district would be digging itself into a deeper financial hole next year.
The district will realize some savings by not replacing 23 teachers who are retiring or resigning.
The board voted to eliminate the 23 jobs through attrition. Most are teachers in the middle and high schools and the special education and English language learners programs. The positions will be added to the 17 elementary school jobs that were cut last month due to declining enrollment.
The district will include the positions in the budget as placeholders should actual student enrollment require that some of those teachers be rehired in the fall, said Darlene von Behren, assistant superintendent for administration and personnel.
However, the district will try hard not to replace those positions, which has the potential to save about $2.6 million.
In other staffing news, three elementary administrators will be changing positions for the upcoming school year.
Current Principal Curtis Hudson will replace Charles Reed Elementary Principal Beth Wackerlin, who is resigning at the end of this school year.
Current Lincoln Elementary Principal Kelley Gallt will take Hudson’s place at Freedom, and Elementary Assistant Principal Casey Hartman will become principal at Lincoln.
Gallt helped open Lincoln as a teacher, while Hudson opened Freedom Elementary as its first principal.