New Castle News

June 7, 2014

Consolidation prompts teacher furloughs

Debbie Wachter
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — The New Castle Area School District’s consolidation and closing of three elementary schools resulted in only three teacher furloughs.

District superintendent John J. Sarandrea said the decision on furloughs was made after teachers were allowed to bid on positions, and after “checkerboarding” of positions according to dual certifications was done within the district.

The three furloughed teachers are Leah Parady, high school, junior high and John F. Kennedy music; Nikki Jo Piccirillo, high school life skills, and Kara Reider, second-grade at Thaddeus Stevens.

“It’s possible there could be some more movement,” Sarandrea said, “and by the time we get back next (school) year there could be fewer people on that list.”

He noted that all other position reductions through the consolidation were through retirements and attrition.

The three furloughed teachers are the lowest on the seniority scale, he said.

With the completion of the Lockley Early Learning Center construction and renovations, students in grades 1 and 2 will be moving there in the fall from West Side, John F. Kennedy and Thaddeus Stevens schools.

Third-graders will move to George Washington Intermediate School.

The three primary grade schools officially closed at the end of the day Thursday, the last day of classes.

The school district, meanwhile, has obtained appraisals of the three closed school properties, with the intent to possibly sell them.

The school board at its regular meeting Monday will hear a presentation from solicitor Charles Sapienza about what the board’s options are in selling the buildings, according to Sarandrea.

The appraisals, obtained through Richard G. English and Associates of Sharon are: John F. Kennedy, $150,000; Thaddeus Stevens, $120,000 and West Side, $110,000.