Official meets to dispel rumors

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— To answer questions or clear up any misconceptions parents may have about Hayden High School being stripped of one teacher, Superintendent Scott Mader is having a meeting tonight.

Mader will meet with anyone interested about the district's decision to reduce its work force because of budgetary reasons at 5:30 p.m. in the school board meeting room.

"There is a misconception about us dropping classes, which is not going to happen," Mader said. "I will be available to talk with anyone interested in class scheduling or about the budget."

Since the district decided to cut a high school social studies teaching position, Mader has received numerous telephone calls from parents regarding the situation.

Last week, Mader met with about 10 high school parents to discuss the matter.

Due to declining enrollment, the district cut the teaching position held by Don Toy. With Toy's departure, psychology, sociology, American wars and Western civilization will not be offered to students this fall.

Of the classes, Western civilization was the only course offered to students for college credit.

Mader stresses only these four courses will not be offered next year.

"We are not dropping programs," Mader said. "We will still continue to offer quite a bit of what we have."

At the meeting, Mader will also discuss why the teaching position needed to be cut.

Because of declining enrollment, the district is cutting the social studies position, along with a middle school special-education teacher to save $72,000.

The reason the district has to make the cut is the district will no longer be able to count the large enrollment that has benefited the district for four years.

For the 1998 school year, the district had an enrollment of 554 students.

Since 1998, enrollment has declined each year. In 1999, the district had an enrollment of 520 students. Last year, the district took a big hit when enrollment dropped to 469 students.

This year, school officials are expecting a decrease of two students.

With a declining enrollment, this is the last time the district can count the enrollment from 1998 in its average, which the state uses to determine state aid for the district.

Come next year, the district will no longer be able to count on those figures, and Mader is estimating the district will lose close to $160,000 next year.

To prepare for the expected loss, the district moved forward this year with making cuts to its teaching force, Mader said.

Teaching positions are not the only areas being affected by the tight budget.

Administration is proposing to reduce a full-time custodial position to part time. The district will also cut back on dues it pays to the Colorado School Board Association.

The district will also not contract out snow removal services for this year. The district plans on doing the work.

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