Carbondale Area School Board To Eliminate 11 Teaching Positions

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

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

CARBONDALE, PA  – Several Carbondale Area teachers aired concerns about the elimination of 11 teaching positions at a special work session held Saturday morning.

The school board will vote to approve the $21 million budget for 2012-13 on June 20. The budget does not contain a tax increase, but school district officials expect to save about $600,000 by not replacing 11 teachers retiring this year, according to business manager David Cerra.

But the eliminated positions could also lead to larger class sizes and fewer elective options, teachers who attended Saturday’s work session said.

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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.

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Up To 364 Jobs On The Block In Reading School District

Nancy Swope knows a thing or two about education.

She’s been teaching in the Reading School District for 32 years, longer than some in the capacity crowd gathered inside the Reading School District’s board room Wednesday night have been alive, she pointed out with a smile.

Swope spoke passionately to the school board about her dedication to the district. About her passion. About giving her heart, her soul, her blood, sweat and tears to Reading schools.

It was a stark reminder of what the district will be losing.

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State Senator Judy Schwank Says State Could Help Reading City Schools

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

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

Facing an overwhelming budget crisis, the Reading School District would accept help from the state, according to a local legislator.

State Sen. Judy Schwank on Tuesday sent a letter to Ron Tomalis, state secretary of education, in support of state assistance in preparing the district’s 2012-13 budget.

“It is my position that the school board directors cannot make the difficult decisions they must make in constructing the 2012-13 budget until they have full confidence in the accuracy of the current fiscal data for the district,” wrote Schwank, a Ruscombmanor Township Democrat.

Representatives from the Department of Education were unavailable for comment.

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Wyomissing School Board Accepts Krem’s Retirement

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

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

Editor’s note:  That didn’t take long!!!!!!!

The Wyomissing School Board has accepted the resignation of Superintendent David P. Krem and hired his successor.

Krem submitted his resignation for the purpose of retirement Monday night. His final day with the district will be June 29.

Krem will be replaced by Julia R. Vicente, the district’s assistant superintendent/ director of elementary and secondary education.

The magnitude of the moves was belied by the mechanism, a board vote to approve a personnel report that spelled out the administrative changes.

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Allentown School District Moves Closer To Student Uniforms

Allentown charter school students wear them. So do Catholic school students. Now, Allentown School District students could one day wear them too.


The school board’s Education Committee on Thursday again scratched the itchy subject of requiring student uniforms. But unlike uniform debates that have taken place in the last decade or so, this one seems more real as anger and frustration boils over scantily clad students who ignore the district’s unenforceable dress code to either act sexy, defiant or think their particular style is just fine.

A growing number of school directors, administrators, students and teachers voiced strong support for establishing a mandatory, homogeneous clothing style for schools, beginning in September 2013 for elementary schools, 2014 for middle-schoolers and 2015 for Allen and Dieruff high schools.

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Manheim Township School Board Backs Fee Hikes For Activities

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

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

Taxes will be going up next year for all Manheim Township School District property owners, but those whose children participate in sports and other extracurricular activities will face an additional tax burden.

At least that’s how Bob Geisenberger sees it.

Geisenberger, of Suffolk Drive, was one of four residents — two parents and two students — who complained about the school board’s decision to double student participation fees for sports and other after-school activities next year.

The fees will increase from the current $60 for an unlimited number of activities to $120 for the first activity, $80 for the second and $60 for each subsequent activity, with no cap on how much each student or family could pay.

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Reading City Schools Losing Another Administrator

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

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

Another Reading School District administrator is saying goodbye to the district.

Michelle A. Diekow, assistant business manager, has been hired by the Blue Mountain School District in Schuylkill County as its new business manager.

The news comes in the wake of a mass firing of eight top Reading administrators last week and the resignation of a ninth.  According to an interoffice memo,  Diekow was named the point person for business office issues after the firings.

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Critics Say Nepotism Common In Reading Schools

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

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

Around the Reading School District, it has almost become a mantra: “It’s all about who you know.”

While school leaders deny its existence, there is a pervasive perception that the district is wrought with nepotism.

And many current and potential employees have the idea that friends and family members of school board members and administrators benefit unfairly because of their ties to school leaders.

Based on information provided by the district, 28 of 2,200 district employees are related to board members who have served in the past two years. Dozens of other district employees are noted as friends of board members.

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New Reading City Schools Chief Says She’ll Listen First

Dr. Carlinda Purcell has a plan for the Reading School District – even if it’s not that obvious right off the bat.

The Reading School Board on Monday formally introduced Purcell as the district’s newest superintendent, gathering the media and a handful of local officials for a press conference at the district administration building.

Introducing Purcell, school board President Yvonne L. Stroman said it has been a long journey trying to find a new leader for the district, but the wait was well worth it.

“There is no doubt of her leadership, of her wealth of knowledge she brings to our district,” Stroman said.

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Governor Mifflin School District Still Grappling With $2 Million Shortfall

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

Image via Wikipedia

Eliminating or curtailing academic programs should only be a last resort for closing the $2.1 million gap in the Gov. Mifflin School District’s draft 2012-13 budget, administrators told school board members Monday.

But if the district wants to keep that option open, it needs to get started soliciting state approval to make program changes.

Administrators suggested that board members vote next week to ask the state’s permission to scale back technical education, world language and family and consumer science programs, eliminating five teaching positions.

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Wilson Board Says Close 2 Schools

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

Image via Wikipedia

After months of listening to parents praise the Lincoln Park and West Wyomissing elementary schools, the Wilson School Board voted 8-1 Monday to close both in June.

The schools are the district’s smallest, but parents who oppose closing them like the neighborhood schools, which they say perform well even if they don’t have the same amenities as the district’s larger schools.

Board members said they had to look at the big picture. Officials said the move will save $500,000 annually and spare the district the expense of millions of dollars in repairs.

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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!