Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Cleveland Schools expected to propose layoffs and school closings

The Cleveland Metropolitan School District is expected to act quickly to propose and approve a plan to deal with a $47.5 million projected budget shortfall for the 2011/2012 school year. 

Some school closings and layoffs are to be expected.  Additional measures will likely include wage and benefit reductions, operational efficiencies and revenue enhancements.

In a meeting with City Council yesterday, Interim CEO Peter Raskind explained the timeline he anticipates for developing, announcing recommendations, publicly discussing and approving a budget and management plan.
In the meeting with council yesterday, Raskind explained the criteria he’ll be using to develop recommendations:
  •  Academic performance
  • School buildings capacity vs. utilization
  • School Buildings age and conditions
  •  Location and geographic coverage of school buildings

CMSD Interim CEO, Peter Raskind
Some of the issues raised in the meeting included: * the need for clarity and communications regarding developing recommendations and making decisions;  * flexibility and cooperation between the District and Cleveland Teachers Union ; * concerns for not closing excellent schools or cutting proven outstanding teachers; * taking into consideration school cultures and strengths of the community and neighborhoods where they are located, i.e. SPO’s neighborhood support etc..; * not losing ground on gains made in school reform, i.e., smaller specialty high schools; neighborhood schools model; development of Charter alternatives under the District’s management; * priority of keeping class sizes at appropriate levels; and, * at least a 2-year plan on facilities so people can better plan and make decisions for their children and families.

In terms of potential school closings, the District will be utilizing the recent census data for their analysis on future projected enrollments.  Raskind also confirmed that the District does not expect to close any of the current 23 high schools.

 Interim CEO Peter Raskind and Chief Academic Officer Eric Gordon will
update the community on the fiscal and academic challenges the Cleveland
Metropolitan School District faces.

Time:  6:00 – 8:00 pm
Dates and Locations:  

Tuesday, March 29th
East Technical Campus Auditorium
2439 E. 55th Street

Wednesday, March 30th
Lincoln-West Campus Auditorium
3202 W. 30th Street

Cleveland Metropolitan School District Information

Next scheduled Board Meetings:
  • Tuesday, March 22, 2011 (New Location) Board Business Meeting 6:30pm
    Board of Education Administration Building, Auditorium
    1380 East Sixth Street, Cleveland
    NOTE:  Announcement expected regarding details of budget and operation plans for 2011/12
  • Tuesday, April 5, 2011  Board Work Session 6:30pm
    Board of Education Administration Building, Board Room
    1380 East Sixth Street, Cleveland
    NOTE:  Vote expected regarding details of budget and operation plans for 2011/12

CMSD Facts

Number of Schools: 112
Pre-Kindergarten–Grade 8: 89
High Schools (9-12): 23

Students - Total Served: 44,362 (2009-10, latest official figures available)

Attendance Rate, 2009-2010:  91.7 %

Graduation Rate , 2008-09:  54.3%

Employees:  6,331;  3,463, Educational staff;  teachers 2,808

Financial Information

$1.4 Billion total annual budget

$ 663.5 M         General Funds
$ 346.7 M         Special revenue funds (primarily state & federal grants)
$ 283.9 M         Capital Projects
$   56.5 M         Internal service funds
$   15.7 M         Debt service

[Projected budget shortfall = $47 M, or approx. 8% of current operating budget]

2009-2010 cost per pupil:  $14,573  

Interim Cleveland schools CEO Peter Raskind likely to propose layoffs, school closings
By Thomas Ott, The Plain Dealer, Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Cleveland Teachers Union Local 279,

School Year Report Cards from Ohio Department of Education:

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