Sailing through the financial storm
Olentangy schools will start the year with 13 fewer administrators, a savings of more than $900,000 annually.
The move comes while the district is grappling with reductions in state funding and local property values, said Wade Lucas, Olentangy superintendent.
Lucas shared a reorganized administrator chart with the school board Wednesday night that streamlines operations at the central office and has more people who are cross-trained in different areas.
The district is going from four executive directors to two, and putting some elementary level assistant principals back into the classroom, saving $913,013.
Olentangy board members Scott Galloway and Stacy Dunbar initially expressed concerns about how many employees would be directly reporting to certain people in the district’s central office, saying that 26 direct reports seemed like a lot considering those supervisors would be completing their work evaluations.
“I’m all for streamlining, but that seems like a significantly high number to me to manage appropriately,” Galloway told Lucas. “I think eliminating layers and pushing down accountability is healthy, but 26 (direct reports) sounds like a lot.”
Lucas said that with many people in the central office being cross-trained that evaluations and direct reports shouldn’t be a problem.
“I’m not concerned with evaluations,” Lucas said. “I’m mostly concerned about performance.”
Olentangy will open two buildings this year — Olentangy Berkshire Middle School and Heritage Elementary School, so while the district will start the 2011-12 school year with 70 administrators, it had 79 administrators during the 2010-11 school year, Lucas said.
As the district continues to grow at a rate of about 800 to 1,000 students a year, Lucas said that administrator number will fluctuate, but the long-term goal is to create a more cost-effective and sustainable organization.
The administrative cuts come from all areas, including four-and-a-half positions from Olentangy’s central office for a savings of $354,805; two positions (middle school athletic directors) from the secondary level for a savings of $145,000; and six and a half assistant principal positions from the elementary level for a savings of $413,208.
Those in the middle school athletic director positions eliminated will go on to be assistant principals at Hyatts and Berkshire middle schools, Lucas said. Some of the elementary assistant principals will go back into the classroom as teachers.
The administrator cuts come from retirements and attrition, or not filling vacated positions, Lucas said.
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