Spl. Ed. aides headed to YEMS

Help is on the way to the special education programs at Youngsville Elementary Middle School.

The Warren County School District board of directors approved four new hires for positions, created during a special meeting last month, during the March meeting of the board held on Monday at the Warren County Career Center.

“In past sitautions where we are trying to support a program, we make these effective through the end of the year,” Board Vice-president Donna Zariczny said. “Is this a permanent position we are bringing on?”

“The end result would be the same,” Director of Administrative Support Services Amy Stewart said. “So we handled it as a position. We’ll be cutting. With all the moving of the schools, (it) would be the same net result.”

Positions are likely to shuffle all over the district as Sugar Grove, Russell and Allegheny Valley elementary schools are slated to close after this school year.

“(We) would determine at the end of the year how many we need,” Stewart said.

Three of the positions were approved as building specific aides while a fourth was classified as a “Western Attendance Area Aide.”

“The contract provides for building aides or attendance area aides,” said Stewart. “We have to to keep the attendance area under a percentage.”

But the classification brings extra flexibility.

“We can assign that aide anywhere in the attendance area based on the need of the students,” said Stewart.

“There will be three specific to a building and a fourth will float back and forth,” Zariczny asked.

“Absolutely,” said Stewart.

At committee meetings in February when the positions were created, Superintendent Dr. William Clark explained that “the number of paraprofessionals being increased would be extremely helpful.

He said then that the administration’s recommendation would be to add one aide at Youngsville High School and three at YEMS. Of the three at YEMS, one would be assigned to the K-2 autism support class and the other two would float, one each in the autism program and the emotional support program.

He said the costs for the four positions for the remainder of the school year is in the realm of $60,000.

“I know we have adequate dollars in the contingency” to cover the cost, Board President Arthur Stewart said.