Manchester superintendent outlines his plans for additional $2.3mBy BETH LaMONTAGNE HALL
New Hampshire Union Leader
June 22. 2012 12:24AM
MANCHESTER - The Board of School Committee won't discuss the additional $2.3 million it budgeted Wednesday night until next week, but Superintendent of Schools Thomas Brennan has offered some ideas as to how he'd like to spend the money.
Brennan's list of staffing proposals presented during Wednesday's special school board meeting put most restored positions in the elementary and middle schools. The district could bring back at least 70 positions, according to Brennan's projections, about 50 of which would be teachers.
The $2.3 million in funding from school district trust funds will be added to the $152 million the aldermen allocated the district earlier this month. The school board is set to meet Thursday, June 28, at 7 p.m. at City Hall to finalize where this money will be spent.
Brennan said he would restore nine special education positions; 17 elementary school teachers; 12 language arts teachers at the middle schools; 10 elementary physical education, art and music teachers; one carpentry teacher at the Manchester School of Technology; two interpreters/tutors; one high school guidance counselor; five part-time and four full-time assistant principal positions; two certified instructors in special reading and math intervention programs; six paraprofessionals; one support staff job, and one full-time and one part-time administrator.
School board members were pleased to see Brennan suggest bringing back assistant principals and followed up his recommendation with a vote mandating Brennan to restore four of the laid-off middle school administrators.
But the board questioned why restored staff was so heavily focused on the lower grade levels and told Brennan they wanted to see funding spread out more evenly.
Committee member Sarah Ambrogi asked why Latin and German classes cut from city high schools were not restored.
'I really think we ought to have the pain felt more evenly across all three levels of schools,' she said.
Between now and when the board meets again next week, committee members will submit recommendations for restored positions.
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Beth LaMontagne Hall may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.