34 Teachers To Be Laid Off At Cleveland Heights-University Heights Schools

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Middle_School_kidsUNIVERSITY HEIGHTS Citing declining enrollment, the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education has voted to lay off 34 teachers for the 2010-11 school year.

The contract of a 35th teacher was also not renewed due to performance issues.

By state law, the teachers had to be notified of the reductions by April 30.

Superintendent Doug Heuer said from 2005-06 to 2009-10, the district’s enrollment dropped from 6,349 students to 5,780, a 7 percent decline.

Teacher reductions for the same period were 5.4 percent, Heuer noted. He said the drop in enrollment should be mirrored by a similar reduction in teaching staff.

“An analysis of the numbers would indicate that the district is overstaffed by 9.5 full-time equivalent positions,” Heuer said.

“The district must be accountable for meeting our students’ academic needs in a manner that is fiscally responsible. To accomplish this task, the district must have the flexibility to assign properly licensed teachers in a manner that addresses the demands of a very fluid student population.”

Heuer met with the 34 teachers April 21 to explain the situation and answer questions.

“This is no way reflective of the quality of work they have done this year,” he said. “We’re proud of the work they have done.

“It is a circumstance we wish we were not in, but the situation demands it. We will work to correct that.”

The district hopes to have made many of the recalls by May 31, Heuer said.

“We will make every effort to try to recall as many of these teachers as we can,” he said. “It may be as late as August before we can recall some of them.”

‘Layoff is excessive’

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