Seven staffers once slated to leave Male High will return - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Seven staffers once slated to leave Male High will return

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© Male High School © Male High School
The site-based decision-making council at Male High School met to discuss staffing and other issues on Tuesday, July 29, 2014. The site-based decision-making council at Male High School met to discuss staffing and other issues on Tuesday, July 29, 2014.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Seven of the nine teachers and administrators previously overstaffed at Louisville Male High School will retain their positions at the school – and a fourth guidance counselor will be hired to help serve the school’s 1,800 students.

The seven people returning to the school include Todd Barber, an assistant principal; guidance counselors Cynthia Sullivan and Jill Crutcher; social studies teachers David Dudley, Joshua Poore and Kevin Schulz and biology teacher Jill Wight.

Two others – Jacinto Padron and Scott Lawrence – will not return; Padron has taken a teaching position at Ramsey Middle School and Lawrence will remain overstaffed because the school doesn't need an additional physical education teacher.

"The council indicated that they wanted to bring as many back as we could," said Jim Jury, the principal of Ballard High School who is also serving as the acting principal at Male. "The numbers indicated that we needed almost all of them, so we were able to do that."

The nine employees had been overstaffed in May by Male High School principal David Mike, who has since been reassigned to central office pending two district investigations into testing improprieties and questions about his professional behavior.

Each spring, principals go over their budgets and make plans for the following school year and make personnel decisions based on what they feel their needs are and then make recommendations that are ultimately approved by the school's SBDM council.

If there are staff members who are no longer needed, they are overstaffed – meaning they won't be working at their current school, but will find work at another school within JCPS.

Jefferson County Public Schools Superintendent Donna Hargens asked Jury to help out at Male until the district’s investigations are complete. She has not indicated how long that would take.

During Tuesday’s SBDM meeting, Jury briefed the council on staffing. He told them that the district was giving Male "one-time" money to pay for an assistant principal position – but he cautioned against using that money.

"I think we should absorb the cost of the assistant principal position so that we are not obligated to the board and so that we won’t have to eliminate the position due to funding next year," he said.

During the meeting, Sullivan, one of three counselors at Male, told the council that hiring a fourth counselor is "critical."

Aside from Sullivan and Crutcher, the third guidance counselor is Rhonda Branch – but she has also been reassigned to central office pending the outcome of the district’s investigation into improper testing procedures.

In the meantime, Carol Sheely – a retired longtime guidance counselor in JCPS – will assist in the counseling office, Jury said.

SBDM members asked Jury if Male could fund a fourth assistant principal and a fourth guidance counselor.

"I think we could possibly do both, but you want to make sure you have enough teachers and that you aren't dipping into other funds that the school will need in order to do that," he said.

In the end, Jury said he would move forward with hiring an additional counselor and see if he can find funds for a fourth assistant principal.

Ben Wyman, a parent on the Male High SBDM, said hiring another counselor is a top priority.

"You can’t run a school this big without four counselors," he said.

Earlier this month, the Kentucky Department of Education released a report detailing violations by Mike, Branch and teacher Debbie Greenberg in administering the ACT Compass, a standardized test given to assess seniors' "college readiness" for school accountability purposes.

While Mike and Branch have been reassigned to central office, Greenberg has retired from JCPS. 

Reporter Antoinette Konz can be reached at 585-0839 or @tkonz on Twitter.  

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