Monday, Apr 23, 2018
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Monroe recalls 127 teachers

MONROE - The Board of Education last night voted to recall 127 of the 140 teachers it voted to lay off last month.

The 13 teacher layoffs will not take effect until July 1. The majority of the layoffs are from the high school and middle school.

Terry Serbin, assistant superintendent for personnel, said it was necessary to initially lay off so many teachers because he had to find positions for the 46 teachers that would have otherwise been displaced next school year with the closing of Cantrick Middle School and the moving of sixth graders back to the elementary school.

Union contracts allow for the district's most experienced teachers to get their preference on open teaching jobs.

Layoffs, by contract, must be done according to seniority.

Mr. Serbin said the large number of initial pink slips allowed him to give senior teachers their choice of posts, in addition to placing them in the positions that best fit their level of teacher certification.

Each of the 13 layoffs would save the district about $70,000, for a total savings of roughly $910,000.

Mr. Serbin said that he and his staff plan to work on recalling a few more teachers before the end of June.

Over the last few months, the board has voted to close the middle school, switch to a trimester schedule, consolidate bus routes, eliminate maintenance and custodial positions, cut high school electives, reduce the athletic budget, and eliminate driver's education.

Mr. Serbin said the switch to a trimester schedule and the closing of the middle school allowed for "a consolidation of classes" that created room to lay off the teachers without having to increase class sizes.

The board's cuts are expected to save the district more than $3.5 million, more than enough to cover the district's current $2.3 million deficit and enough to begin to address the $2.5 million deficit anticipated for the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Ken Laub, the district's business and finance director, said the financial forecast easily could change depending on whether expected per-pupil foundation allowance cuts and proposed reductions in school retirement costs pass through the state Legislature.

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