Archive for Monday, March 11, 2002

Dozens of district programs, jobs on the line at board meeting tonight

March 11, 2002


The Lawrence school board tonight will consider a two-phase plan for reducing district expenditures and increasing revenue.

Under Phase I, a district budget committee recommended $1.9 million in budget cuts and nearly $1 million in fee increases. Phase II includes $2.1 million in budget cuts.

Phase I cuts

(Not in priority order)

l Elementary staffing Reduce the equivalent of seven teaching staff for a savings of $297,864.

l Elementary guidance Align all schools to a 450:1 student-to-counselor ratio, to save $55,318.

l Elementary gym, music and art Respond to projected enrollment decline to trim staff and save $106,380.

l Elementary sixth-grade band and orchestra Drop the program to remove equivalent of six jobs and save $245,273.

l Elementary preschool gym, music and art Stop providing those classes to 4-year-old children in the early-childhood program to save $35,000.

l Grant School library media clerk and secretary Eliminate a part-time clerk and full-time secretary when Grant is closed to save $30,900.

l Secondary staffing Eliminate classes in German, Japanese, Latin, materials and make other changes to cut six teaching positions and save $279,141.

l Secondary/elementary orchestra teacher Eliminate the job to save $42,552.

l Secondary vocal teacher Eliminate a part-time junior high teacher and part-time assistant choral position to save $42,552.

l Secondary vocational education Delete the vocational education advertising and supply budget to save $4,000.

l Secondary vocational education Cut a part-time secretary to save $12,500.

l Special education Phase out American Sign Language by stopping new enrollment in the program and cut six-tenths of a position to save $18,307.

l Special education Drop district support for the WRAP crisis-intervention program at elementary and secondary schools to save $140,000.

l Special education Drop a suspension-alternative program to cut a part-time staff member to save $9,665.

l Special education Eliminate a teacher and a paraprofessional in the elementary community-based instruction program to save $29,140.

l Special education Reduce the work of autism consultants, essentially cutting a part-time job to save $8,885.

l Special education Eliminate three roving paraprofessionals working as full-time substitutes to save $23,632.

l Special education Drop the positions of a psychologist and an educator/secretary to save $15,530.

l Special education Delete two full-time and four part-time gifted teachers for a savings of $78,500.

l Special education Reduce the noon bus routes and field trips for students to save $4,000.

l Special education Drop a part-time paraprofessional position in the early-childhood program to save $14,080.

l Special education Delete a part-time paraprofessional job in speech/language to save $9,083.

l Special education Eliminate a full-time paraprofessional and full-time job coach at the high school level to save $14,080.

l Special education Cut a half-time social worker in the therapeutic classroom to save $8,839.

l Library media Eliminate library aide staffing at Lawrence High School and Free State High School to save $8,839.

l Library media Reduce two library media positions at district headquarters to 10-month jobs to save $10,338.

l Nursing Cut to 14 the number of registered nurses in district schools and replace those lost with 11 health aides to save $42,069. The minimally trained health aides would be paired with a nurse to cover two schools.

l Capital outlay Move to the capital outlay budget the responsibility for several maintenance and technical jobs to free up $250,000 in the general fund.

l Custodial Reduce the equivalent of a half-time position with closing of Grant School to save $12,000.

l Athletics Eliminate all intramural sports programs to save $78,000.

l Pep band Drop from the budget an $1,800 allocation for a junior high pep band, which doesn't exist.

l Weightlifting Cut supplemental pay to football coaches who supervise the off-season weight program to save $5,637.

l Fine arts Eliminate supplemental pay for elementary teachers coordinating evening vocal, band and orchestra programs to save $26,600.

Phase I revenue enhancements

l Textbooks Increasing to about $70 per student from $42 the basic rental fee to generate $210,000. Begin assessing a $15 fee to students in the reduced-lunch program to generate $12,000.

l Instructional materials Create a new $15-per-student fee to defray costs of weekly readers, workbooks and other items to generate $80,000. A $5 fee for reduced-lunch students would add $4,000 to the treasury.

l Technology Start a $10-per-student fee to pay for supplies in computer laboratories that generates $70,000. The $5 fee for reduced-lunch students would raise $4,000.

l Transportation activity A $15-per-student fee would help cover the cost of field trips and generate $80,000. Currently, these fees range from $2 to $4. A $5 fee for reduced-lunch program students would bring in $4,000.

l Facility rental Increase fees charged for rental of school facilities by 25 percent to raise $35,000.

l Enrollment Increase to $50 from $15 this supplemental fee charged secondary students to support school organizations and activities to raise $120,000.

l Pay-to-participate Begin charging a $50-per-student fee for each sport or activity regulated by the Kansas State High School Activities Assn. to raise $110,000. In junior high schools, the fee applies to basketball, football, track, tennis, wrestling, volleyball, cheerleading, pep club and performance groups, including band, drama and choirs. At the high schools, the same list would apply with the addition of baseball, golf, soccer, swimming, gymnastics, softball, pom, debate and forensics. (This doesn't replace the $25 activity fee charged students in athletics, band, debate, forensics and cheerleading. The activity ticket gets students into all games and activities.)

l Pay-to-ride Launch a program to charge all students living less than 2.5 miles from their school a fee of $120 per semester to ride the bus. Students living beyond the state minimum of 2.5 miles from school wouldn't pay, and students in the free- and reduced-price lunch program can apply for exemptions. No discounts would be offered to families with multiple children. The fee would raise $230,000.

Phase II cuts

l Elementary all-day kindergarten Eliminate the programs at Riverside, Cordley, Kennedy, New York and East Heights schools to save $212,760.

l Elementary guidance Option to increase the student-to-counselor ratio to 500:1, cut the equivalent of 1.3 positions and save $55,318.

l Elementary guidance Option to reduce the counselor staff to the equivalent of 3.6 positions (each covering as many as five schools) to save $306,374.

l Elementary guidance Option to eliminate all counseling services in elementary schools to save an additional $175,535.

l Elementary Title I supplemental Option to reduce to only first- and second-graders the district's funding of extra reading and math instruction to children who don't qualify for the federal Title I program to save $31,627.

l Elementary Title I supplemental Option to eliminate all extra reading and math programs to save $282,021.

l Elementary library media Eliminate all library media clerks at elementary schools to cut the equivalent of 8.4 jobs and save $142,929.

l Secondary guidance Drop the Lawrence Alternative High School's counselor to a half-time position from full-time and save $21,276.

l Special education Drop three autism paraprofessionals to save $21,120.

l Special education Eliminate two full-time social workers to save $35,354.

l Library media Drop the ProQuest electronic periodical database for secondary students to save $15,914.

l Library media Delete the World Book electronic encyclopedia used by students in kindergarten through high school to save $4,643.

l Nursing Option to trim registered nursing staff to 14 and hire 11 part-time health aides to save an extra $13,462.

l Nursing Option to trim registered nursing staff to 12 and hire 13 part-time health aides and drop a secretary to save an additional $67,757.

l Athletics Eliminate all B and C teams in the eighth- and ninth-grade levels to save $16,000.

l Athletics Drop all sophomore programs, which would compel all ninth- and 10th-graders to compete for junior varsity or varsity spots, and save $40,000.

l Cheerleading Eliminate two high school cheerleading assistant coaches to save $5,400.

l Cheerleading End cheerleading in the junior high schools to save $29,500.

l Pep band Drop supplemental pay to four staff and save $4,959.

l Quiz Bowl Eliminate supplemental pay for two staff and save $3,157.

l North Central Leadership Drop supplemental pay for three staff who work in a support role on the program to save $9,020.

l Drama Reduce the number of drama assistants to save $6,510.

l Tutoring End supplemental pay for teachers involved in a junior high school tutoring program to save $8,114.

l Marching Band Delete supplemental pay for band directors involved in the program to save $6,150.

Additional cuts

(Cuts recommended March 6 by administrative staff)

l Elementary staffing Reduce secretarial and clerical support to save $108,000.

l Peer assistants Cut the program to save $94,000.

l Administrative staffing Leave jobs vacant to save $100,000.

l Special education Delay hiring an executive director of special services to save $92,000.

l Classified staffing Reduce the number of contract days to save $30,000.

l Secondary library media Cut media clerk staffing to save $98,000.

l Literacy Learning Eliminate coordinators of the program to save $40,000.

l Custodial Hold off on calling in custodial substitutes until the third day to save $30,000.

The following cuts were removed by the school board from consideration:

l Secondary course load Limiting students to only six hours of courses each semester, instead of the current seven hours, to save $222,547.

l Elementary staffing Increasing the size of classroom enrollments by adjusting the student-to-teacher ratio to save $518,283.

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