Did They or Didn’t They?The two largest school districts in the area, Keene and Monadnock, announced last week that they were reducing or “pink slipping” staff.
New Hampshire law states that staff, teachers and paraprofessionals, must be notified of this change in their employment for the next school year on or before April 15th of the current school year. If this notification is not received then the school district must issue contracts for the next year to these employees. In some cases the district will opt to rehire certain staff that has been pink slipped.
Monadnock chose to “pink slip” forty paraprofessionals. They did this as the district is experiencing declining enrollment and they do not need this entire staff. Keene on the other hand chose to “pink slip” thirty-eight teachers that did not have tenure. Tenure in New Hampshire is received after a teacher has taught in a district for three consecutive years. Keene’s reason for “pink slipping” this staff was the state of New Hampshire informed the district that they had not collected enough funds for the state’s retirement fund. Keene needs to collect this additional money and deposit it immediately into the state’s account to satisfy the deficiency balance. The state also told the district that this money cannot be part of this year’s school budget. The Keene district needs to “RIF” or “pink slip” these teachers to cover this money.
This prompts the informer to ask this question, “How did the Winchester school district avoid this issue of “pink slipping?” One could conclude the following through deductive reasoning:
- The Winchester School district has a great business manager
- The Winchester School district got lucky
- The Winchester School district had a premonition that the state would be short of money and this is why the district added the funds back into the budget
The informer remembers Mr. Whippie telling those at the school meeting that if “we don’t need this extra money we won’t use it”. One can only think that the board had prior knowledge of the state being short of retirement funds and lacked the courage to tell the voters the real reason that they needed this money. This extra money in our school budget ensures that the teachers and paraprofessionals in Winchester would not receive “pink slips”. The informer understands that the voters in Winchester have the knowledge to vote for money that is necessary to support the school. The informer also understands that if this is the case then the school budget should drop at least $1.1 million next year.