Archive: July, 2012
Thomas Darden, the Philadelphia School District's deputy chief of strategic programs, has resigned, The Inquirer has learned.
A school district official confirmed Darden's departure on Tuesday.
Darden had worked for the school district since 2009. He has taken some public heat recently for missteps at School Reform Commission meetings.
Kristen A. Graham
Inquirer schools reporter Kristen Graham takes your questions today starting at noon. She'll discuss her Sunday story on the impact of tighter security measures on standardized tests in Pa., plus whatever else is on your mind. On a mobile device? Click here to access the chat.
6 p.m. update:
The vote to endorse William R. Hite Jr.'s contract passed unanimously. Hite will start Oct. 1, and the contract runs through 2017. Hite will make $300,000 as superintendent.
Thomas Knudsen's contract extension passed unanimously. Knudsen will be paid $25,000 monthly and then $22,500 monthly once Hite starts. He will work through Nov. 23.
The Pennsylvania Department of Education has just announced almost $20 million in grants given statewide to fund "community learning centers" for at-risk students. The funds will go to organizations across the state, including several in Philadelphia and its surrounding counties.
"The intent of this grant is to fund the establishment and sustainability of community learning centers that provide additional educational services to students in high-poverty and low-performing schools," education secretary Ronald Tomalis said in a statement. "The entities which were selected to receive funding provide educational opportunities that complement, supplement and enhance the work being done in the classroom."
It was a competitive grant process, with 101 applications received and 61 federally-funded awards made.
A tentative deal has been struck between the Philadelphia School District and its blue-collar workers’ union, officials said late Wednesday night.
The deal - which still must be ratified - appears to avert layoffs and the privatization of 2,700 jobs of members of 32BJ, Local 1201 - bus aides, mechanics, cleaners, building engineers and other workers.
Union officials confirmed the deal, but said they would release no specifics, including the number of layoffs averted, until members saw the terms.
Philadelphia School District officials gave an update Friday morning on the state of their finances, and it was more bad news.
Initially projected at $218 million, the deficit is now anywhere between $255 and $282 million.
City Council's decision to give the distict $54 million less than the $94 million it asked for is part of the reason for the new number. But there are other factors - $9 million more from city tax collections and a net $8 million change in state funds. And the district is also bracing for a revenue loss of up to $27 million by virtue of tax appeal losses.