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SCHOOL BUDGET: New Staffing Requests for Fiscal 2018

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At the Feb. 27 School Committee meeting, Superintendent Bill Olsen presented members with the following staffing requests for the fiscal year that begins July 1. 

1.0 Elementary English Language Learner Teacher (in place in fiscal 2017) $54,154

1.0 World Language (0.4 FTE*) and Math (0.6 FTE) Teachers at Westford Academy $54,154

1.0 Special Education Preschool Teacher, including supplies $62,154

2.0 Special Education Preschool Teaching Assistants $33,908

1.0 Special Education Teacher at Miller School (in place fiscal 2017) $67,212

2.0 Contingency Special Education Teaching Assistants, Systemwide $33,908

Materials for Makerspaces $8,000; Additional full‐day kindergarten class, one at each Grade K‐2 school   $313,490

*FTE stands for Full-time equivalent.

English Language Learner Teacher — $54,154

This teacher had to be hired during the 2016/2017  school year and it is necessary to recognize the  financial obligation in fiscal 2018. This year we have  37 more students who are assessed and classified  as English Language Learners. Twenty‐five of the 37  new ELL students are at the elementary level.

Additionally, in August 2016, state regulations  changed requiring us to provide services to some  students for a longer period of time. We are required by the state and federal  government to provide services to all students who  have been identified as having no or limited English  speaking ability.

World Language Teacher — $21,662

There are currently two CP2 Spanish 1 classes. At the present time we do not have any CP2 Spanish 2 courses so in order to accommodate the logical next step for these students we would like to create two CP2 Spanish 2 sections.

Math Teacher —  $32,492

The enrollment at Westford Academy is projected to increase by 65 students in 2017/2018. This will create the largest enrollment (1,745) in the history of the Academy. At the present time (2016/2017) some math classes are at or near 30 students. The .6 FTE math teacher will allow us to meet the need for additional sections of Algebra I, Trigonometry and Precalculus (Honors). Both of these courses are required.

Special Needs Teacher – Preschool — $62,154

Salary: $54,154 Supplies: $8,000

It will be necessary for us to have an additional preschool class for 2017/2018. An increasing number of children are being identified, at an early age, as needing academic and behavioral services. We are expecting three students during this year who possess significant needs and are medically complex. They will not be able to be integrated into existing classes. It is possible that this additional class will have to be established during the current school year (2016/2017).

Special Education Teacher Assistants — Preschool — $33,908

Every new preschool class that is established requires two full‐time Teacher Assistants

Special Education Teacher — Miller School — $67,212

This staff member needed to be hired in the current school year to address the increasing number of students requiring special education services and an increasing complexity of needs. We must properly recognize the cost of this position in the 2017/2018 budget.

Special Education Teacher Assistants —  $33,908

Teacher Assistants are needed to provide special education services that are specified in a child’s Individual Education Plan (IEP). These personnel often allow us to provide quality services within district (least restrictive environment). These staff will provide services to children who move into Westford or current students who may be identified as needing special education services.

Materials for Makerspaces — $8,000

During the current school year we are conducting discussions on how to incorporate more hands‐on activities and projects for our students to stimulate innovative/creative thought. Makerspaces in our schools will provide students with more opportunities for creative thinking, problem solving, and collaboration.