Kelly staffing contract OK’d

The Warren County School District has contracted out substitute teacher services.

In a unanimous decision, the school board this week approved a contract with Kelly Educational Staffing to coordinate the district’s substitutes.

Kelly would actually hire the district’s substitutes and coordinate which substitutes go where, and did so for several years before ultimately being a budget casualty.

Board President Arthur Stewart said that the “cost is generally a break even” in comparison to running the program in-house.

WCSD Director of Administrative Support Services Amy Stewart explained at committee meetings in March that a provision of the Affordable Care Act includes “requirements on how many hours that people work during the week.”

The cap limits employees to a 30-hour work week before the “district would be responsible for picking up (health care) for those folks,” said Stewart.

Challenges would have persisted if the district continues to run the program, she added.

While the ACA provisions would not hamper the district for day-to-day substitutes, much longer-term substitute positions would be affected as it would be harder for a teacher in a longer-term post to maintain less than 30 hours each week.

“If we kept them as district employees, we would have a hard time looking at principals saying that a substitute has to be off (due to the hours limit). That would be a very difficult thing to do,” she added.

“I know that getting quality subs has been an issue in the district,” said board member Paul Mangione. “If we go with Kelly, will we have a larger pool?”

Stewart explained that, as a result of furloughs in years past, the fill rate for substitute teachers was good. But as those individuals find other positions, the district is “starting to have trouble with fill rates.”

“The last experience we had with Kelly Services, (we) had (an) excellent fill rate at the teacher level,” said board member Tom Knapp.