Facing $4.9M Deficit, York City Schools Still Looking To Grow

Map of , United States Public School Districts

Map of , United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Required to adopt a balanced budget by June 30, York City School District officials are cobbling together a proposal with two major pieces of the financial puzzle missing.

First, it’s still unclear whether New Hope Academy Charter School will be forced to close — a scenario that could send an influx of students and money to the district.

And, the teacher’s union has not agreed to new collective-bargaining agreement with the district, which adopted a financial recovery plan that depends significantly on workforce savings achieved through wage and benefits reductions during the next five years.

Nonetheless, district administrators are proposing to move forward with plans to add and expand programs.

Read more:  http://www.yorkdispatch.com/breaking/ci_25520609/facing-4-9m-deficit-york-city-schools-still

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Two Students Shot At Logan Charter School

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Philadelphia ...

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Philadelphia County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Two 15-year-old students were wounded Friday afternoon in what may have been an accidental shooting inside a charter high school in Logan, Philadelphia police said.

One of the victims, a girl who was shot through the arm, was treated at Einstein Medical Center, just blocks away from Delaware Valley Charter High School, where the shooting occurred. She was released from the hospital later in the day.

The second victim, her boyfriend, was struck by the same bullet, which lodged in his shoulder, police said. He remained at the hospital Friday night.

The shooting, which sent parents scrambling to find out if their children were safe, came two days after a 17-year-old boy was arrested for bringing a loaded handgun to a West Philadelphia charter school.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/breaking/20140118_Breaking__Two_students_shot_at_charter_school.html#EzOvRdAkfh5CfyY1.99

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Owners Donate CNA Building In Reading To I-LEAD Charter School

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsyl...

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsylvania area. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A major piece of the downtown Reading puzzle has a new owner.

The five-story, 260,000-square-foot CNA Insurance building at Fourth and Penn streets has been donated to the I-LEAD Charter School, company and school officials said.

“It’s a blessing from the sky,” said Angel Figueroa, vice president for resource and development at I-LEAD. “It’s going to change the lives of many young people.”

Officials from CNA and I-LEAD are expected to officially announce the donation at an event this afternoon.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=515104

Federal Grand Jury Indicts PA Cyber Charter School Founder Nicholas Trombetta And His Accountant

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Nicholas Trombetta, a onetime wrestling coach who founded the wildly successful PA Cyber Charter School, has been indicted by a federal grand jury on a variety of fraud and tax charges.

A 41-page indictment made public this morning outlined the federal government’s allegations against Mr. Trombetta and his accountant, Neal Prence.

“This investigation is active and continues,” U.S. Attorney David Hickton said during a press conference this morning at the FBI field office on Pittsburgh‘s South Side.

Federal investigators tallied the amount they said Mr. Trombetta stole at $990,000.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/news/education/federal-grand-jury-indicts-pa-cyber-charter-school-founder-nick-trombetta-and-his-accountant-700493/#ixzz2coSV4x1p

Harrisburg Schools To Furlough More Employees Yet Hires Cyber School Director

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Dauphin County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Dauphin County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Harrisburg School District announced 15, and possibly more, furloughs for non-teaching staff to help save up to $687,000 as part of its recovery plan — if the union contract isn’t approved.

“We’re not playing here,” Chief Recovery Officer Gene Veno said Monday.  “This is about recovery — financial recovery.”

With tensions already high from recent teacher resignations and furlough notices, they further escalated when the School Board voted to hire a director for the district’s cyber charter school at an uncertain salary.

Veno said the next set of furloughed positions haven’t been announced.  As many as 20 positions with an average salary of $40,000 could be considered.  In July, the district furloughed custodians, library and health aides and maintenance workers,

Read more: http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2013/08/harrisburg_school_district_to_2.html#incart_m-rpt-2

Exeter School District Budget Could Mean 5.8 Percent Tax Increase

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Faced with rising employee and charter school costs, Exeter School officials are preparing a preliminary budget for approval in February that raises taxes to the maximum amount allowed by the state.

The district is looking at raising taxes 1.7435 mills, to 31.8466 mills. The tax bill for a property assessed at $100,000 would increase about $175 to $3,185.

That would be a 5.8 percent increase. The state puts a 2.2 percent cap on district tax increases this year, but the district anticipates ceiling exceptions for pension, special education and construction costs.

The preliminary 2013-14 budget currently totals $67.83 million, about $5 million greater than this year’s. Among the reasons for the difference are $1.5 million in increased pension costs and $1.1 million in increased wage costs.

Read more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=444468

Pennsylvania Gets More Than $41 Million In Federal Education Funds

Pennsylvania has been given more than $41 million in education funding through the federal Race to the Top grant program.

The money will be used mainly for a new evaluation system for teachers, an effort to align academic standards and improve access to charter and online charter schools, according to state education officials.

The $41,326,299 grant will be paid over the next four years.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=355271