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School Board Public Comments

I am following up from 9/5 board meeting Action Item P5- Assistant Directors of Student Welfare and Success and the related e-mail I sent the governing board the same morning.

In my e-mail input, I asked the board to consider the impact of two new positions in light of the TVUSD Budget Deficit and how they would affect the ability of the district to provide services in other areas.

The two Assistant Directors said to be replacing the director of Child Welfare and Principal on Special Assignment were reported to create a cost savings of a range of $20,000 to $65,000. With TVUSD’s observed pattern of placing new administrators closer to Step 6 than Step 1 upon hiring, the “Cost Savings” will likely be minimal. This is disappointing considering when I asked the district last spring what they were doing at the top to promote deficit reduction. The district suggested the CWA position was to be eliminated.

As the spokesperson for our teachers and specialists, why am I concerned about something arguably outside the scope of our members?

It is a concern as high class sizes should be alleviated as a priority. 11th grade English and Social Studies teachers at GOHS are dealing with HRD reported average class sizes of 38.5 and 39.2 respectively. This would suggest multiple class at this site are at 40 or over.

With nearly 30 years of teaching in a High School Social Science classroom I can tell you there is a difference between 36 or 37 and 39 or more students. The teacher grading an essay in US History or English for their example 39x5 or 195 students would need to spend 16.2 extra hours that week at only five minutes per assessment. Arguably more time would be needed to give constructive feedback and improve writing skills.

I am not pointing a finger of blame at HRD, Great Oak Site Administration, or the Governing Board for that matter.

Yet, since I did not get a response to my 9/5/17 e-mail, nor were my concerns recognized in public session I am simply asking you to recognize how approving resources in one area removes the potential to place resources in another. The board should not approve new positions in isolation.

Are these two assistant directors more important than mitigating high class size and providing a manageable teaching and learning environment to the teachers and students of this district?

Thank you

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