Superintendent clarifies on hiring-cutting at Culver Comm. Schools

In our article on five Culver Elementary School teachers given notice of termination in last week's (May 9) edition of the Culver Citizen ("Five Culver Elementary teachers cut last week"), it was reported that, "At the April 29 school board meeting, three new teach­ers were hired at a cost of $179,050 for the upcoming year," which was incorrect.

Culver Community Schools superintendent Brad Schuldt has clarified the following: as of the close of this (2012-2013) school year, the corporation has had one resignation and four retirements from its full-time faculty-staff at the middle and high school level. Combined with the Reduction In Force of five Culver Elementary teachers mentioned last week, $690,000 has been eliminated from the corporation's budget.

Three out of the five positions previously filled by staff-faculty who resigned or retired were able to be eliminated, but the corporation will still need a faculty member licensed for FACS (home economics), a required position. The corporation also elected to retain its one middle school math licensed teacher in current position at the elementary school and so will need to fill a middle school math post.

Thus, between the math and home economics positions, the corporation will have to hire two new teachers by next school year.

Further, the corporation also had to hire a nurse for an IEP disabled student, earlier this year.

The nurse, home economics, and math positions were thus incorrectly reported as having been filled by the board at the same (April 29) meeting as five elementary teachers were cut. It's important to note those positions cannot be filled by any of the five RIFed Culver Elementary teachers due to licensing requirements, according to Schuldt.

Schuldt says the corporation also estimated a cost of $50,000 in unemployment costs.

Previously, the school board had resolved to cut $500,000 from its budget by the end of this school year. Factoring in the above-mentioned $690,000 saved the corporation due to resignation and retirement this year, minus $179,000 in unemployment, the nurse position, and two future hires, the corporation has cut $511,000 from its budget, just above the board's resolved amount.

Schuldt also notes he's been asked if music will be eliminated at Culver Elementary in light of teachers cuts.

"We definitely will have a similar offering in music, both vocal and band," he says. "We currently have four Music Educators in the corporation and even if one would leave, several of our Music teachers were performing other duties outside of music. Through rearranging teaching schedules, Culver Elementary won't be negatively affected in the music offering."