No Reduction in Force (RIF) for teachers - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

No Reduction in Force (RIF) for teachers

Contrary to estimated calculations, no Reduction in Force (RIF) for teachers is needed for the Fiscal Year 2014.

As part of the budget process, over 200 less positions (various positions) across the school district, which includes some central office staff employees, were not included in the FY2014 final budget due to outsourcing of some custodial services, school closings, program closings, maximizing class sizes, and attrition. In addition, there are no work schedule adjustment or furlough days included for FY2014.

The good news of no RIF comes after more than $141 million dollars has been reduced in state funding.  Like other school districts across the state, reductions in state funding forced the administration to find and recommend viable options to continue to provide quality education to all students, allow the district to operate prudently, and balance the budget.

"Retirements, resignations, and restructuring of some positions helped the district avoid a RIF," stated Kathy Tessin, Chief of Human Resources. "We were also able to use positions filled last year with end of year hires, which are not automatically issued or guaranteed annually."

The attrition rate was also higher in the spring than in previous years. In 2012, there were 85 retirements and resignations from April to June. In 2013, there were 132 resignations and retirements in the teacher classification group in the same time frame.

With only a dozen available positions to absorb employees at the time, the district did lay-off 77 custodial personnel. The contractors who were awarded the custodial services bid has reported at least 54 former MCSD custodial employees have been hired and others are being considered for hire in the school nutrition department and the transportation department.

"I commend the administrators and staff for the team effort and diligence it took to make decisions that continues to best support all of our children and their education," said Dr. John A. Phillips, Jr., Interim Superintendent. "To lay-off employees is never a first option or an easy task.  We must continue to be proactive, especially when state funds are drastically reduced.  We are forced to make some critical decisions that may not always be popular, but are always in the best interest of our children, our employees, and overall supports the effective operations of the school district."

For more information, contact communications@muscogee.k12.ga.us, or call (706) 748-2034.

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