Wilkes-Barre Area Expands Study Of Buildings, Approves New Administrator Compensation Plan

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

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

WILKES-BARRE, PA — Proposals from companies willing to do a feasibility study of Wilkes-Barre Area’s three high schools haven’t even been submitted yet, but the School Board voted Monday to expand the study to cover all district buildings.

The board also approved a new agreement granting most administrators annual raises between $800 and $1,400 through the 2015-16 school year, an offer Board Member Christine Katsock criticized. She noted the preliminary budget, sure to change before final passage later this month, had a $3.7 million shortfall despite a proposed 2.9 percent property tax increase.

Fear of falling debris from loose facades prompted emergency fencing and entrance closures at Coughlin and Meyers high schools last month, and the board voted to put out requests for proposals for a feasibility study on either repairs of those buildings and GAR High School, or construction of a new high school.

A “pre-proposal meeting” with prospective contractors is scheduled for this morning.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1453620/W-B-Area-expands-study-of-buildings

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Reading School Board Confirms Suspension Of Superintendent

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

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

Dr. Carlinda Purcell, superintendent of the Reading School District, wasn’t at work last week.

She wasn’t sick, and she wasn’t enjoying a vacation.

Instead, Purcell was serving a five-day unpaid suspension handed down by the Reading School Board.

The board voted 7-1 on Tuesday night to retroactively approve the suspension, with Robert F. Heebner Jr. voting no.  Yvonne L. Stroman was absent.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=493521

Personnel Shifts Reduce Pottstown School District’s Administration

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — Departures and changes of personnel over the summer have the Pottstown School District scrambling to cover responsibilities and, at the same time, use the opportunity to “do more with less.”

A number of key administrators are retiring, or have found other jobs, it was revealed at Thursday’s school board meeting.

Among those leaving are Rita Cohen, who is supervisor of secondary special education who is retiring, and Jerry Umamarino, assistant high school principal and Lincoln Elementary Principal Loretta Hoch, both of whom have found employment elsewhere.

The sequence of those departures has forced the Pottstown administration to re-configure and re-configure again, who will be responsible for what and how things will change for the coming school year.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20120722/NEWS01/120729777/personnel-shifts-reduce-pottstown-schools-administration

Reading School District Seeks 14 Administrators; Teachers Union Upset

Just two days after passing a 2012-13 budget that laid off more than 200 employees, the Reading School District is looking to hire – and the teachers union isn’t very happy about it.

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

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipediaust two days after passing a 2012-13 budget that laid off more than 200 employees, the Reading School District is looking to hire – and the teachers union isn’t very happy about it.

In an email sent to staff Friday, the district announced that it is looking to fill 14 administrative positions. Some are existing positions currently vacant, while others are new.

But despite appearances, district officials said, the district is not opening up its budget to create new positions.

Calling the job listings a wish list for newly hired superintendent Dr. Carlinda Purcell, school board President Yvonne L. Stroman said only seven or eight of the positions will likely be filled when school begins this fall. Stroman said only positions included in the district’s $220 million budget – such as director of secondary education and director of special education – will be filled.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=396900

Pay Frozen For Most Boyertown School District Administrators

The Boyertown School Board has voted to freeze most administrators’ salaries for the 2012-13 year, saving the district nearly $70,000.

Dr. Dion E. Betts, superintendent, had requested that the board freeze his salary earlier this month.

At its meeting Tuesday, the board approved the freeze unanimously for a savings of about $9,000.

It also voted 7-2 to freeze the salaries of all of the district’s 17 principals, assistant principals and special-education directors, for a savings of about $60,000.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=388974

Pottstown Borough Manager Lured Away By West Norriton Township

Location of West Norriton Township in Montgome...

Location of West Norriton Township in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Pottstown‘s loss is West Norriton‘s gain.  And it is Pottstown’s loss!  Good luck finding somebody to replace Jason!  We wish Jason the best of luck in his new position and thank him for leaving Pottstown in better shape than he found it.

POTTSTOWN, Pa.  — Borough Manager Jason Bobst is leaving the post he has held for three years to take a job as the township manager of West Norriton.

With the 90 days’ notice his contract requires, his last day will fall sometime in August.

Bobst said Tuesday he had not been looking for long, “but I saw an opportunity that opened up and it piqued my interest.”

He was helped in what he said was “a difficult decision” by “ongoing issues around here,” but he declined to elaborate.

Read more: http://www.timesherald.com/article/20120522/NEWS01/120529831/pottstown-borough-manager-hired-by-west-norriton

8 Administrators Axed In Reading City Schools Purge

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

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

Editor’s note:  The drama continues!

The Reading School Board without warning Wednesday night fired eight top administrators, including the district’s acting superintendent.

The board voted 6-2 – with James Washington and Frank Denbowski voting no – to fire Dr. J. Drue Miles, acting superintendent.

The board then voted 5-3 – with Denbowski, Washington and Rebecca Acosta voting no – to fire Miles’ two assistant superintendents, the director of elementary education, the director of secondary education, the director of student services, and both the director and assistant director of special education.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=382193

Fleetwood School District Administrators Freeze Their Pay

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

Image via Wikipedia

Facing a budget gap as large as $2.4 million, Fleetwood School District administrators have agreed to freeze their pay for a second straight year.

Dr. Paul B. Eaken, superintendent, announced the move at a school board meeting this week.

The administrators’ contract with the district is set to expire at the end of the school year. The group has agreed to a one-year pact that does not include salary increases.

Eaken said administrators did not feel it was appropriate to accept pay raises when the district is facing financial difficulties that will likely impact students and staff.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=366805

5 Reading City School District Leaders Leaving; Blame Board

Acting superintendent, 4 other interim administrators have had it with directors…
 
Citing “philosophical differences” with the Reading School Board, five of nine interim administrators hired in the summer – including the acting superintendent – have decided to call it quits.In a letter sent to board members on Friday, the administrators said they will terminate their contracts effective Feb. 17, giving the board six weeks to find replacements.

Those resigning are: J. Drue Miles, acting superintendent; John Stoudt, acting assistant to the superintendent; Roger Brubaker, acting director of finance; Guadalupe Matias, acting director of elementary education; and Joe Santoro, acting director of secondary education.

 

Pottstown School District Administrators Agree To Pay Freeze

I am pleased to learn that Act 93 employees and PSD administrators have taken voluntary pay freezes.  The teaching staff is not part of this group.  The Pottstown Federation of Teachers is now involved in a contact dispute with the district that is not going well. 

Teachers in the Fleetwood School District (Berks County) have been asked to take voluntary pay freezes, along with the administration, which will save the Fleetwood School District $800,000. 

Teachers in the Twin Valley School District (Chester County) have been asked to take voluntary pay freezes, along with the administration, which will save the Twin Valley School District $600,000 to $700,000 a year.  The Superintendent, Dr. Robert F. Pleis has already volunteered to take a pay freeze along with his colleagues at Fleetwood and Pottstown.

We give the PSD administration two Roy’s Rants thumbs up for leading by example.

The board also voted NO on “forward borrowing”.  “Forward borrowing” would have allowed the district to borrow up to an additional $23 million, over and above the $28 million already authorized.  The $28 million was authorized for renovations at the district’s five elementary schools.  We applaud the fiscal responsibility shown by the board.  PSD already has an enormous debt from the renovations at the high school and middle school.  Taxpayers cannot afford more debt.  Any amount over $28 million will need voter approval!