The Budget – Day Two

The next budget review focus is on the Rochester International Academy – Mary Andrecolich-Diaz, Principal. The description of the school is as follows:

“The Rochester International Academy (RIA) is designed to facilitate the cultural and academic transition of newly arrived English Language Learners through rigorous language instruction and interdisciplinary learning in collaboration with families and community.”

To what is the Rochester International Academy transitioning students? From where have these students arrived? If these students are new to America and English, why are they subjected to rigorous language instruction instead of easing the transition by discovering the developmental ability of our immigrant students, developing their talents and then directing the use of their gifts and talents to facilitate their success as adults and Americans. What is interdisciplinary learning and how are they collaborating with families?

Staff lost to the 2013-14 budget:
• 1 – Asst Principal – Second 28305
• 1 – PARA ADA – 28305
• .30 – Tchr-on-Assignment – 28305
• It’s budget was reduced $48,467

We see that while they are also losing one administrator, they are gaining 1.6 teachers. As well, RIA’s Other and Non-instructional positions decrease .5 and 1 respectively even though enrollment is expected to increase by 31 students.

Other than the description, Rochester International Academy, offers nothing more than All City High in the way of assessable information.

It is interesting however, that the Rochester International Academy has been operational for two years, not one. RIA opened it doors in the September, 2011-12 school year, operated through the 2012-13 school year and is now budgeting for the 2012-14 school year. This means there should be at least one year of data to review.

At this point, School Board members must definitely demand that the Superintendent update the information provided in the 2013-14 proposed budget before holding any more public hearings.

If we are not going to hold the Superintendent and his Executive Group accountable for the information provided to the public, how can we believe that the district is acting transparently in its function or design?

For the sake of our children we must begin to hold our leaders accountable.

Join the Movement to Save Our Children!

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