State Puts Reading School District On ‘Financial Watch’

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

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

The state has officially labeled the Reading School District as being in “financial watch status,” a step away from state intervention.

The Department of Education announced Friday that the district has hit several financial-difficulty indicators in the Act 141 early warning system. Passed last year, Act 141 is the state’s law to help financially distressed school districts.

Four districts – Harrisburg, Duquesne, Chester-Upland and York – already have been placed in Act 141 financial recovery and have state-appointed recovery officers overseeing their finances, something Reading officials are hoping to avoid.

Dr. Carlinda Purcell, superintendent, said she sees the designation as a positive step toward dealing with the chronic financial struggles.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=460369

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Budget Crisis Forces Staff Cuts In Many Berks County School Districts

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

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

Attrition.

It’s a word that has no doubt become quite familiar to school board members across Berks County as they look to shed expenses.

And the No. 1 expense for a school district? Personnel.

Cutting staff is a tough choice, but one many Berks school districts have faced. In all, 15 districts have said they will trim their ranks for the 2012-13 year.

Because cutting jobs has a big impact on people’s lives, attrition has become the preferred method.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=389391

Scranton Teacher Will Strike Monday If Negotions Fail Today

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

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Editor’s note:  The Scranton School District serves over 9,000 students!

Negotiations will continue this morning between the Scranton teachers union and the school district, but a strike is still scheduled for Monday.

After a full day of negotiations on Friday, the union president said she was “disappointed” by the lack of movement from the district.

“They thought they made progress,” Rosemary Boland, president of the Scranton Federation of Teachers, said. “We didn’t feel that way.”

The union made a “huge concession” for the first year of the contract, and for the second and third years, gave district negotiators an option “we thought they could deal with,” Ms. Boland said.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/scranton-teachers-strike-still-on-for-monday-negotiations-to-continue-saturday-1.1276677#ixzz1nPk52Jwc