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Early Learning Center loses Pre-K teacher to funding uncertainty

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On May 6, the Ashe County Board of Education approved 15 district teachers for career contracts.

Originally published: May. 10, 2013
Last modified: May. 10, 2013

Adam Orr

The Ashe County Board of Education learned Monday that funding uncertainty could mean the loss of a Pre-K teacher in the coming 2013-2014 school year, according to recommendations released May 6 by Ashe County Schools.

"(Ashe County Early Learning Center Director of Pre-K Terry Richardson) and I talked with this teacher," Ashe County Schools Director of Human Resources Lesia Nave, who explained to board members the nonrenewal recommendation, said. "She was hired on a one year contract ... funded by Developmental Day Funds."

According to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Developmental Day funds are made available through the State Board of Education to assist in providing special education and related services to eligible children with disabilities who are placed in accredited development day centers by local education agencies.

Each July, program applications are made available to state school districts, which are then submitted to the Special Programs Section. Local Education Agencies must submit the application each year for children that continue placement.

Following a question from school board member Polly Jones, Richardson confirmed that uncertainty surrounding future Developmental Day Funding led to the nonrenewal recommendation.

"There are 27 (Developmental Day) slots that we have been awarded for next year, but we have to go through the process of evaluating children to sustain those 27 slots, and until we do that we don't have any funds," Richardson said.

"But if (funding) should exist, would (this teacher) get first choice," Jones asked Richardson.

"I would hope so. Shes done an excellent job," Richardson said. "We're doing everything we can to make sure we fill those slots."

Interim Superintendent of Ashe County Schools Johnson said decisions made by the board about retirements and disability allowed the school system to work with three employees from Mountain View Elementary and Westwood Elementary concerning their employment status.

"We have talked to these individuals — the three that you do not see this month — about possibly working for us next year, and that will come on the June 3," Johnson said. "So we think we'll be able to place three out of these four, and we're just considering this one nonrenewal."

The board also unanimously approved 15 employees for career contract status, 33 for probationary contract status, and five for administrative status.
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