Fallout from Baltimore's budget reorganization
In reporting my story for today's paper, I learned that the city school system's budget reorganization has played out in some unpredictable ways.
1) Of the 310 central office employees whose positions were eliminated, all but 14 of them chose to stay in the school system (and six, still not placed, face the prospect of layoffs). I wonder how much the economy played a part in their reluctance to enter a lean job market now, and how many people will leave next year when their pay cuts go into effect.
2) Principals cut 500 school-based positions (initially; some have been restored) and increased money for programs. Over the spring, I heard a lot of concern from program operators who were being told by principals that they didn't have the money to keep them on. The concern at North Avenue was that principals were reluctant to cut positions occupied by their colleagues. But that didn't turn out to be the case. I predict we'll now hear accusations that principals cut the jobs of employees they don't like personally. Union seniority rules prevents this in some cases, but not all.
The class-size estimates are interesting but not surprising, given that we knew that high schools were getting more money and some small elementary schools were getting less. Keep reading to see the figures for elementary, K-8, middle and high schools.
Projected average class sizes, compared with the actual average class sizes last year and the number of students for each teacher allocated under the old budget formula
Elementary schools: 19.1, up from 17.3 last year; old allocation was one teacher per 22 students.
K-8 schools: 19.6, up from 19 last year; old allocation was one teacher per 27 students.
Middle schools: 23.4, up from 22.9 last year; old allocation was one teacher per 30 students.
High schools: 25.4, down from 27.2 last year; old allocation was one teacher per 32 students.