Schools revise staff cuts

Bill Hoban/Index-Tribune School Superintendent Chuck Young answers a question during a recent school board meeting.


The Sonoma Valley Unified School District has reduced the number of positions it intends to eliminate.

Originally, the district proposed eliminating 22 teaching positions – 13 in elementary and nine in secondary; 3.4 administrative positions which includes a vice principal at the high school two half-time vice principal positions at the two middle schools, and a .4 administrator on special assignment.

The cuts are necessitated after a letter from the Sonoma County Office of Education wanting the district to cut more than $2 million from its budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year, which starts July 1.

But in a revised proposal from Superintendent Chuck Young that the school board will discuss at a special board meeting at 4 p.m. this afternoon, Tuesday, March 6, administrators are now proposing to eliminate the equivalent of nine full-time elementary teachers; the equivalent of two full-time secondary math teaching positions; one full-time secondary vocational education teaching position; one full-time secondary English teaching position; two secondary science teaching positions and 2.4 full-time administrative staff positions.

Young, in a memo to the board, said, “Based upon the reduction or discontinuance of the particular kinds of services set forth, it will be necessary to decrease the number of certificated employees in the district by the equivalent of seventeen and four-tenths full-time equivalent positions for the ensuing 2018-19 school year.”

The teachers union was upset with the original proposal because it said the teachers were taking the brunt of the proposed cuts. And the union wondered why there was only one position cut in the district office – a teacher on special assignment.

The union suggested three positions in the district office that could be cut – an assessment and date coordinator; an English language coordinator and an ed tech coordinator.

In a separate memo to the board on Monday, Young said, “the actual number of teachers who will receive notice of possible termination will likely be as few as one or two and possibly none.”

Young also said the net staff at the district office has been cut by 4.1 positions – 6.6 positions that were reduced in 2016-17, 3.5 positions added in 2017-18 and one position reduced in the 2018-19 budget.

“While there will be an increase in the student/teacher ratio and, therefore, some increase in class sizes the average increase will be on the order of one additional student per course,” the memo continued.

There will also be a budget update and a superintendent search update as a part of the meeting that will be held at 4 p.m. today, Tuesday, March 6, at the district office, 17850 Railroad Ave.

The board will also hold a second special meeting, albeit a closed meeting, at 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 7, also at district offices. Wednesday’s meeting will be a discussion about candidates for the superintendent’s position.

Email bill at