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School District Eyes Possible Staff Reductions
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Looking at the need for budget reductions, the move could come in the form of layoffs within the Riverbank Unified School District.

School board members met in regular session on Tuesday, Feb. 19 with a full agenda, and tops on the list was the potential for pink slips. District officials indicated it will likely be necessary to reduce the services of several full-time certificated employees at the close of the current school year. They are also looking to reduce staff for the 2013-14 school year and may have to find as much as $1.5 million in budget cuts over the next couple of years.

Employees whose jobs are on the potential chopping block must be notified of that possibility and the school board passed a resolution to send the appropriate notices to all employees whose services could be terminated in this current year and the next. The pink slips can be called back before the cuts take effect, but by law they have to be issued by March 15.

The resolution for a reduction of eight ‘full time equivalent’ positions district wide was approved by the governing board of the RUSD for next school year. Officials said the district is facing budget difficulties and must make budget reductions for the 2013-14 school year.

As part of the board action at the session, effective July 1, 2013 for all existing unrepresented employees, the District shall reduce their total monetary compensation by five (5) percent annually. If the District, the CSEA bargaining unit, and the RTA (Riverbank Teachers Association) bargaining unit agree to compensation reductions, then unrepresented employees’ compensation reductions shall be adjusted automatically to match the agreed upon reductions with represented employees. The district is authorized and directed to take all actions necessary to accomplish this change.

The RTA and RUSD created a retirement incentive to offer RTA members. The incentive had certain guidelines and eligibility requirements in order to participate. Eight teachers took advantage of the offer and will be retiring at the close of the 2012-13 school year. There were four teachers from RHS, one from Mesa Verde, two from Cardozo Middle, and one from California Avenue School that chose to take the retirement offer.

District Superintendent Dr. Daryl Camp said a major part of the problem is declining enrollment, with the district receiving less state funding because of the lack of enrolled students, requiring the budget reductions and potential layoffs.