Monday, May 20, 2013
Covering Dallas, Monmouth, Independence, Falls City and surrounding areas since 1868
July 17, 2012
FALLS CITY -- Falls City High School will have one less teacher during the 2012-13 school year.
The school district's recently passed 2012-14 budget contained cuts of one teacher and a teaching assistant, as well as reductions to classified staff work days, according to Superintendent Pat Evenson-Brady.
The high school will no longer have a math teacher, bringing the teaching staff at the school to four, with one position half time.
Evenson-Brady said with no other instructors with the credentials to teach high school math, the district had to get creative to fill that gap.
Instead of having a teacher in the classroom in Falls City, the school district will use an online program -- Oregon Virtual Education -- to teach math courses.
Evenson-Brady said the district will watch to see how students respond to the program in 2012-13.
"This is our first time using (Oregon Virtual Education)," she said. "We are experimenting with it."
She said if the program is successful, the district may incorporate more online classes currently unavailable in the district.
Evenson-Brady noted one teaching assistant position was eliminated. Six classified staff days were cut as well, limiting their work schedules to only days school is in session.
Falls City works from a two-year budget, covering the 2012-13 and 2013-14 school years.
The school district's general fund budget for the 2012-13 school year is a little more than $2 million, while the 2013-14 budget is about $1.97 million. In 2011-12, it was about $2.2 million.
"With such a small budget, it makes really good sense to look out two years," Evenson-Brady said, noting, as with any budget, periodic adjustments will be made as the funding picture changes.
She said the district tried to budget as carefully as possible -- especially given some funding sources, such as the local equalization grant and small high schools grant, require legislative authorization to continue. The district's declining enrollment also is a concern.
Evenson-Brady said while the district is losing a teacher and classroom assistant, it has attempted to minimize the impact on students.
"We really budget conservatively and we haven't had to cut (school) days, which is a good thing," she said.