Wednesday, November 04, 2009

The Day After: GLHS Faculty Meeting

Today's faculty meeting is dedicated to recapping last evening's reorganization meeting. Principal Gabriel begins by examining the timeline:
  • Public comment and questions should be submitted before the December 14 Board meeting, since the recommendations will be acted upon at that date's meeting.
  • Director of Technology and Public Relations Director positions will be eliminated by March 1, 2010.
Other plans:
  • There are no plans to make cuts to any elective offerings. The building, at this point, should continue under the status quo.
  • The 75-100 students at Sawdon alternative school will be reabsorbed into Grand Ledge High School. A more traditional Sawdon 'school within a school' technique that runs concurrent with the normal school day is unlikely, due to the physical limitations of the building. Another choice would be to run the Sawdon students in a differentiated schedule, like from 3 to 8 P.M.
  • The Sawdon faculty have the ability to bump into the regular education teaching ranks due to their tenured status. But only the least senior, probationary, non-tenured teaching positions are threatened.
  • The numbers look to be 50-70 teachers that will be displaced, which will cause an unpredictable bumping process throughout all of the District's buildings.
  • Attrition will claim building principals Charlie Phillips and Mark Christman, who are retired and have been working on a contract basis.
  • Dr. Matthews is planning on visiting with the Grand Ledge High School faculty on November 10 to further iron out the details of the restructuring plan.
  • Grand Ledge Public Schools gained 43 students through a schools of choice program, but that was counteracted by the loss of over 100 students.
The difficult point is the 'waiting game' for the less-senior faculty members, where people are counting positions from the bottom up the seniority list and speculating about their potential for layoff or job retention. An example bumping scenario occurs with middle school physical education teachers being reduced and bumping into other phys ed positions, or their other certifications. The bumping scenario is not limited to teaching faculty, either, because, with all of the building closings, secretaries, custodians, food service personnel, and teaching assistants will all go through bumpings as well.

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