In a bittersweet agenda Thursday, the Denair Unified School District Board is expected to hear its budget is back on solid ground and, in separate motions, prepare to lay off teachers for the coming year.
The proposed high school layoffs involve elimination of one class in each of twelve subjects, which could affect up to that many teachers.
The “reduction in force” resolution also lays out criteria to use in deciding between teachers with equal seniority, giving preference to bilingual teachers and those with extra credentials or degrees.
The layoffs would become necessary if enrollment continues to decline at the high school, which has about 350 students.
By state law, teachers must be notified by March 15 if they might be laid off for the coming school year. The board will also vote on granting up to $2,000 in incentive pay to teachers who notify the district by March 12 if they plan to retire or resign at school year’s end.
The loss of high school enrollment is also cited in a proposed change to graduation requirements. Because of reduced science classes, trustees are being asked to approve reducing the district science requirement from three years to two, comparable with what other districts in the area require.
Other changes in graduation requirements would eliminate freshman mini-courses, which would be replaced by making health a part of physical education classes, and folding computer training into agriculture and career-training classes.
The board will also be asked to eliminate 16 hourly teaching jobs at its home-study charter school, Denair Charter Academy, which principally serves struggling high-school-age students. The charter’s enrollment typically starts small but grows throughout the year as students are referred from other schools, requiring staffing flexibility.
Trustees will hear a report from the district’s fiscal adviser about the much-improved budget report for the district. Denair emerged from near-bankruptcy last year and in December announced it would meet fiscal regulatory requirements a full year ahead of its financial recovery plan.
Bee education reporter Nan Austin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (209) 578-2339. Follow her on Twitter @NanAustin.