VINELAND - More details emerged on potential job cuts in the city school district even as the city's new superintendent refused to release basic details about the positions being cut.
Eight high school supervisory positions known as "administrative assistants" will be cut, as could as many as all 15 assistant principal positions in the district.
Those people holding eliminated positions can potentially return to teaching or other jobs in the district if they have tenure and seniority rights, school officials said. In turn, school policies dictate that could result in other employees with the least seniority being bumped out of jobs.
"It's very hard to say who's losing their job," Board of Education President Frank Giordano said Thursday, stressing that he preferred to cut no jobs. "Could there be some? Yes, it's a possibility."
Giordano spoke only in generalities and not on any of the specifics pertaining to the employees in question, citing privacy rights of the personnel involved.
Like other district leaders, he would only confirm that two administrative assistant positions will be cut and eight assistant principal positions could be cut. School Superintendent Maryann Banks made those situations public because the people in those positions chose to allow their employment to be discussed publicly at Wednesday's board meeting. School employees, however, confirmed that every administrative assistant and assistant principal received the same legal notice, known as a Rice notice for its legal precedent, and face the same fate.
Beyond that, Banks refused to discuss even the most basic details, other than listing the 10 employees Wednesday night who opted to have their employment discussed in public.
Banks refused Wednesday to say how many administrative assistants the district has, citing workers' confidentiality rights. (The district has eight positions, seven of which are filled, school personnel director Maryann Greenfield said.) On Thursday, Banks refused to describe what it is that an administrative assistant does. That second refusal came after she was asked whether the administrative assistant cuts were part of an overall restructuring of small learning communities at the high school.
School board member Frank DiGiorgio filled in some blanks there.
"The superintendent wants to make some changes in the way the curriculum is administered at the high school, and that affects the administrative assistants," DiGiorgio said. "If you eliminate them, I imagine they can return back, if they're tenured teachers."
DiGiorgio added, "If there is no space for them, there may be layoffs, I imagine. I think there will be some sort of reduction of force."
When announcing the potential cuts at Wednesday's board meeting, school officials cited potential education cuts that could derive from Gov. Chris Christie's 2011 fiscal year budget. Vineland already is losing $13.3 million in anticipated state aid this year due to Christie's cuts. The governor targeted the money because Vineland schools held an equal amount in "excess surplus," which is surplus above 2 percent of the total district budget.
The Board of Education meets again Wednesday.
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