The Board is holding their prefunctory budget hearing as required by law. There's no sign up in advance. Just show up and add your name to the speakers list. Then, when your name is called, you can drop your words into the abyss. Just don't imagine that anything you say might have any kind of impact at all.
What might you say?
You might say something about all of the raises given out in the central office over the past few months. Raises for no clear reason.
You might raise some questions about specific school budgets. For example:
Why does STEM have just one assistant principal? Shouldn't it have two - one for each of the academies? Isn't that what the contract with NTN requires? Where in the STEM budget are the other things like the NTN subscription cost of $400,000 or the expense for the tech support professional with the $70,000 salary? I don't see them in this school budget.
Why is the projected enrollment for Rainier Beach High School shown as 402 in this document and 426 in the annual enrollment projection? Is that the difference between headcount and AAFTE? If the 402 is AAFTE then why are ALL of the AAFTE shown as XXX.0? Really? .0 in every case? Why does Rainier Beach show only 23.1 teacher FTE and 35.7 total FTE when the school's web page lists 90 people on staff?
Why don't the option schools get the same basic funding as "traditional" schools? If the District reckons that every high school needs a set of basic staff (principal, nurse, librarian, admin, etc.) then by what reckoning do they figure that a school using an alternative instructional strategy wouldn't need the same non-teaching staffing? Also, what are the criteria that the District uses to determine which schools are traditional schools and get the staffing or non-traditional schools and don't get the staffing? Specfically, how is STEM at Cleveland a traditional school? It's an option school, it's an ALE, and it uses a non-traditional pedagogy. So why is it staffed like a traditional school while the NOVA Project is not?
The staffing in the central offices contain some mysteries.
Why does the General Counsel's office include a nurse and a language pathologist? Why does it have 3.9 Directors and supervisors for 4.8 professional staff? Does each lawyer get his or her own supervisor?
The school board office has 3.5 FTE. How is that possible when we know that there are only two people working in it?
How does advanced learning have 13.2 FTE?
How does labor relations have 41.2?
How does instruction services have 11.6 FTE "other support personnel"?
What the heck is "School Services" and what do the 3.9 FTE there do?
What is the difference between Special Education and Special Education Annex?
What is "work training" and how it different from CTE or School to Work?
I see the pricetag on the District web site upgrade has increased to $800,000 paid out of BTA III.
BTA III is also paying $230,000 for Program Placement. Really? What are they spending that on?
BTA III is also spending $700,000 on STEM for some undisclosed expense. It isn't the laptops, that expense is $200,000 this year and is listed separately.