Saturday, May 03, 2008

Massive BOE Job Title Changes Proposed

On Monday, the Board of Education will be asked to approve the abolishment of 43 job descriptions and adoption of 31 new ones.

The school board meeting is 7 p.m. in the Plainfield High School library, 950 Park Ave.

Plaintalker picked up the agenda at the Plainfield Public Library today (Saturday, May 3, 2008) and discovered the massive proposed changes in top administrative titles, but was not able on the weekend to gain more information. The shake-up comes on the heels of a slew of staff non-renewals to balance the budget, but the reasons for, or impact of, the top-level changes are not known.

All those interested will have to attend the Monday meeting and ask questions.

The scope of the changes makes analysis difficult. Plaintalker attempted to correlate the roster with the department list posted on the web site, but not all titles matched. This writer has been told that the restructuring will also mean different patterns of reporting to superiors. What is not evident is whether all those whose job descriptions to be abolished must then re-apply to be hired to comparable titles in the new job descriptions.

As of today, the agenda for the May 5 meeting was not posted on the district web site. At the risk of wearing my fingers to nubbins with my poor typing skills, I will therefore put up the lists and maybe readers in the know will be able to shed light on what it all means.

The list of abolished job descriptions includes:
Accounting Specialist
Assistant Supervisor for Buildings & Grounds
Assistant Supervisor of Information Technology
Computer Specialist
Content Supervisor- Special Education – PHS
Coordinator Community Relations
Director Early Childhood Curriculum & Instruction
Director of Athletics
Director of Community Relations
Director of Guidance K-12
Director of Human Resources
Director of Information Technology
Director of Security
Director of Special Programs
Director of Special Services
Director of Student and Family Support Services Program
Elementary Family Support Services Coordinator
Human Resources Specialist
Parent Education Coordinator
Payroll Specialist
Plainfield High School Content Supervisor
Purchasing Specialist
Supervisor – Basic Skills Compensatory Education
Supervisor – Mathematics
Supervisor – Nursing and Health Services
Supervisor – Science
Supervisor – Social Studies
Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction/Bilingual/ESL and World Languages
Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction/Early Childhood
Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction/Fine and Performing Arts
Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction/Language Arts Literacy
Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction/Mandated Programs
Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction/Testing & Assessment
Supervisor of Guidance –Secondary
Supervisor of Security
Supervisor of Special Education
Supervisor of Special Programs
Supervisor of Staff Development
Supervisor of Student Safety
Supervisor of Teacher Induction & Mentoring
Supervisor, Financial Management
Washington School Community Coordinator

The new job descriptions are as follows:

Assistant Superintendent, Administrative Services
Assistant Superintendent, Educational Services
Coordinator Compensation Administration
Coordinator, Accounting
Coordinator, Business Administration
Coordinator, Community Engagement, Public Information & Marketing
Coordinator, Grants Administration
Coordinator, Human Resources & Support Services
Coordinator, Information Technology and Support Services
Coordinator, Professional Development & Support Services
Coordinator, Purchasing
Coordinator, School & Community Programs
Coordinator, Special Projects & District Affairs
Coordinator, Student Athletics & Activities & Support Services
Coordinator, Student Health Related Services & Support
Coordinator, Student Truancy & Support Services
Director, Early Childhood Programs & Services
Director Educational Services
Director, Guidance Student Intervention, & Family Support Services
Director, Information Technology & Support Services
Director, School Safety & District Security
Director, Special Education, Gifted, & Psychological Services
Social Worker, Student Intervention & Family Support Services
Social Worker, Student Intervention & Family Support Services
Supervisor, Assessment, Data Collection, & School Improvement
Transportation Dispatcher
VP – 12 Month (Various Content Areas)
VP Early Childhood Programs & Services
VP, Arts, Talent & Life Skills Education
VP, Bilingual Education & ESOL
VP, Special Education, Gifted & Psychological Services

All these titles are exactly as described on the agenda.

So now we must ask, why the changes? Who will be left after the shake-out? Will the district save money? Who sought the changes? Why now?

Because Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs asked the board to reschedule its meeting from Tuesday to accommodate the Muhlenberg hearing, the Monday BOE meeting will now conflict with the City Council’s regular meeting on May 5. So reporters and bloggers must choose which to cover. Plaintalker is leaning toward the BOE at this point and hopes many others will come out and ask what it all means. Meanwhile, please comment on the blog.

--Bernice Paglia


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry I am not physically schizoid and can be in only one place the council. We must rely on you as usual for the true facts. Are they going to give job descriptions for the new positions and how to they compare with the terminated positions? Is the change a real restructuring or a means to have a new pay scale? HSY

9:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bernice you are truly an amazing person. While we sit and read the drama unfold on the "blogs" and we wait for the agenda to post on the website you are out and about getting the 411 on what is happening. Thanks for all you do!

11:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Administrators were told they had to REAPPLY for positions if their credentials matched the job description if not adios amigo!

11:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In many cases, a coordinator doesn't have to have the same certification that a supervisor has and thus is paid at a lower salary level. In some school districts, coordinators are not considered administrators and thus can't evaluate teachers. In fact, in some school districts, coordinators belong to the local teachers'association.

12:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with the previous writer. Bernice you truly stick with the real issues in our community. Thanks for keeping us posted.

4:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder if this will emliminate a certain supervisor with no degree. Should be a very interesting week in Plainfield. Monday BOE meeting, Tuesday all job descriptions get posted. I think there are going to be a lot of people without jobs.

4:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What does tenure mean in Plainfield? Quality people avoid districts that place politics before teaching and learning not to mention a union that lacks integrity. At best, eliminating and shifting staff breeds discontent (Middletown) not to mention serious, costly legal issues. What’s the purpose? Reason begs for the incoming superintendent to evaluate onsite then make changes on behalf of the students. The board will choose what’s best for the students by not passing the proposed new job descriptions agenda. In creating a climate of trust, the board will begin a very long road in improving our schools for all our children. If not, politics and agendas will keep hurting students for years to come.

5:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Plainfield is finally going to have a chance at overhauling the district. I hope that the BOE does not lose sight that their role is to help lead our failing district to improvement.Many teachers will also be losing their jobs due to years of poor financial planning and oversight. It is long time to start looking at major changes at the top. This seems to be a great start.

5:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What tenure has meant in Plainfield is having people without proper credentials and qualifications overseeing our schools ($80,000 IT person with no degree). It is clear that people have been allowed to stay in positions and not be effective. Why? Because of tenure. I hope the incoming super is in a position to decide on the people that will occupy the positions. It will be good for him to have the slate wiped clean and not have to deal with the politics that have held our students back for so long. Great reporting Bernice.

9:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you once again for bringing things to our attention that other do not seem to want us to see. The agenda is STILL not posted on the district site; interesting, no? I hope that people will pick up the ball and ask the 9-10 questions that you and all of us want to know; you could never squeeze all that into JUST three minutes of priviledge of the floor. I sure hope all this reconfiguration will cut money not just give people another title at the same amount of pay. WHO is going to do all the interviewing? Hopefully not the Principals. We were told that everyone had to re-apply and be interviewed and if you didn't get the position (at which you used to work), then it would be open to someone else even the "outside" after 10 days, I believe. Well, who WILL do these interviews? It will be September before they are completed! What happens to the Director of HR? Is that one of the Assistant Superintendent positions? I'd also like to know HOW an untenured teacher, who will be at the top of the scale and have tenure in September, hasn't received a "rice" letter. Other teachers received letters and they're no where NEAR this salary. Is this about saving money or not? It just doesn't compute.

9:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is a malodorous haze laying over the Queen City, that only the voters can blow out of town!

10:05 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It looks to me as if Supervisors of content areas will now be classified as Vice-Principals of content areas. That reduces the pool of qualified candidates since one would need an Administrator's certificate to qualify. I'm not sure if there's a difference in salary, but don't be deceived by the reduction in the number of job descriptions. You should notice that at least eight of the current supervisory positions could now be included under the new description of "VP - 12 Month (Various Content Areas)." For example, "Supervisor-Mathematics" could now become "VP - 12 month (Mathematics)." We should consider the possibility that there may be no elimination of positions at all!

10:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why can't we SEE the breakdown to see how much money is being saved (or not)? Could be just the shell game. The teachers are cut and the Administrators are paid over $120,000. Double our classes, double our work load; we're not getting a raise here. What's wrong with this picture? Share it across the board, Board!

12:09 PM  

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