HMS lose teacher aids

So sad to hear that at least 4 teachers aids have lost their job at the middle school. Very sad for them and the kids at school who need them. Having 2 kids that went thru the middle school, I thanked all the aids for a great job. Wishing you the best for the future.
Shame on the principle/mango. Way to go!

Hackmom Hackmom
May '19

Definition of way to go. US, informal. —used to tell someone that he or she has done something well Nice job, guys! Way to go!


This is how mango meets his goals and gets his "incentive pay".....bonus.

Acl76 Acl76
May '19

Last hired fired, long term burnouts stay...


What is the role of a teacher’s aid? I don’t think it was a position while I was in public school (I graduated in 88). Is it for students with special needs or is for aiding a teacher with an entire class room?

Hot under the collar
May '19

I went through 13 years of primary school (if you count Kindergarten) and never had a teachers aid, not even in Kindergarten. Can't teachers teach without help anymore?

Laurel Laurel
May '19

hi, hot under the collar,
it can be both. It depends on the school setting and the IEP of the Child with S Needs.


Students with special needs

Darrin Darrin
May '19

Teacher's Aids for ESL and other challenged learners are state and/or federally mandated..... without funding of course.

Doctor
May '19

Things like this are just going to continue. Lower taxes and higher expenses equal less staff and less assistance for the children. Services cost money- and if the taxpayer refuses to shell it out this is the result. It's all about setting priorities.

dodgebaal dodgebaal
May '19

This directly effects the quality of education the students receive. Hold the superintendent directly accountable for poor decisions like this. Parents have the power to do that!

Retired Retired
May '19

Teacher's Aids assisted students who struggled to understand classroom subjects. This allowed teachers to focus on the class overall. The simple fact is that some students understand a subject better than others. Without aids, teachers will need to hold up the entire class to help a few or let the few struggle and their grades fall.

Teacher's Aids were often used to "fill in the gaps" when there were not enough teacher's available with items such as study halls, class trips, and other activities.

Teacher's Aids were not paid well for the work they performed, received no health benefits, and were not paid for holidays or summer vacations as teachers are. They reapplied for their jobs at the end of each school year (no tenure). They were a very cost effective solution to various problems during the school year. They were a bargain for the tax payer.

I believe that Hackettstown is receiving some additional State aid this year and is hiring some additional teachers. Parting with 4 or 5 aids will allow an additional teacher to be hired. But what happens if, or when, the aid is reduced? The tax payer will need to pick up the tab

Tax Payer Tax Payer
May '19

The Superintendent is not a needed position. When they cut staff it is always last hired, first fired. It leaves tenured/pensioned burnouts in the ranks. Every profession has burnouts, teaching is not immune to this natural condition...


Enjoy your tax cuts. Deal with it. The money you save can now be used to make up your higher prices due to the upcoming tariffs on many things you purchase, plus the higher gas prices now that the Fifth Fleet was sent to raise tensions- or maybe just to increase the profits of oil companies-or highlight the need for increased military spending. These teacher aids are just cannon fodder along with the children that are affected.

dodgebaal dodgebaal
May '19

The Average expenditure in NJ was nearly $21,000 per student last year.
Why don’t we just shut down the schools and pay for tutors for all of them?
Damn.
Uncontrollable.

Stymie Stymie
May '19

That's $63,000 per year, for a family with 3 kids. That's 3/4 of a million dollars, over 12 years. For one family. For a mediocre public-school education. Something's got to change.

JerseyWolf JerseyWolf
May '19

It's all due to budget cuts. Lots of illegals coming in. Can't afford to pay for AIDS because we have to pay to help kids learn to speak English.


More than half the kids in my childs class are hispanic... yes illegal. Free education at our expense. A whole van full gets dropped off in a cab. Not fair. Drains our money.

Triplet Triplet
May '19

The expansion of the area is significant, and I am NOT saying with illegals. Many families are moving in and does not always mean any significance in additional taxes. I work in childcare and see a lot of non English speaking children and and they are legal. They just don't speak English so they need extra help. I have also seen native languages of Russion, Chinese, and Spanish.
There is also the fact that current stats say that the diagnosis of autism is at a nationwide high, with NJ have the highest rate of children who are diagnosed. That means additional help for those children as well as others with learning disabilities. That additional help is usually an aid per child or very small group of children depending on the needs of the child(ren). These children might not all be American but most are.
There are many other reasons to try to cut budget like other salaries going up as the cost of living goes up, the cost of the school's contribution to insurance going up, etc, etc.
It is nice trying to scapegoat the illegal immigrants though I am sure. It sure does make things a lot easier.

Mel81 Mel81
May '19

Never knew you could fit a van in a cab.

Maybe the aids were let go so the children wouldn't be exposed to disease.

Maybe if your teacher had an *aide* your spelling skills would be better.

Maybe you should look up the job description of a teacher's aide.

happiest girl
May '19

"The Average expenditure in NJ was nearly $21,000 per student last year."


Data from Medicare.

"Per person personal health care spending for the 65 and older population was $19,098 in 2014."

Guaranteed it's way more than that in 2019.

dodgebaal dodgebaal
May '19

Dball, you said ""Per person personal health care spending for the 65 and older population was $19,098 in 2014."

Whom do you believe has paid for all these things previously ?!??

Boomers will not be around for the next generations to "suck the life out of forever"....it's time for personal parental accountability to step in.

If "your child" needs any specifics beyond a standard education....the parents are going to have to step in going forward ...free rides and entitlement funds will be going away as more boomers leave this overpriced environment as multiple fleets of school buses are ever increasing , after school programs with no accountability for the cost ,superintendent's with "district representation " ( all in the same state ), poor performing teachers, the list goes on and on.

steven steven
May '19

So wait a teacher needs an aid to teach to a class of 22-23? I graduated 1987. Never saw any aids to help with the teachers activities or help bridge the language barrier, there was none. They taught to classes that averaged 28-30.

So pathetic what the profession has turned into.


"more boomers leave this overpriced environment "
An environment that they created themselves.
A house for instance, they purchased for 20k in 1963- the equivalent of 165k today.
They ask 400k for it even though is smells like Rheingold and cabbage, with the original furnace and septic, but hey, it's a gem.
Then they tell you just how overpaid you are, while they collect a "real" pension-not a 401k, collect social security and medicare faster than they put money in-yet take it willingly from a pimple faced kid at McDonalds.
Not to forget the fact that on top of all this, they never paid the bills when they were due,always begging for another tax break, now even hoping children get high on pot to tax them and reap the profits from the drug.
Let's not forget that 100 BILLION dollars is OWED, so this is money that needs to be paid back, not dumped on a 21 year old young adult.
If you deduct what is owed, a house in NJ is only worth 20 cents on the dollar of the current asking prices.

dodgebaal dodgebaal
May '19

Dodge, the REAL cost is much higher due to much of the Healthcare and Pension costs paid by the state. All part of the scam to hide the real cost, which is excessive...


D'Ball,

Blame whom you choose ..the "reality is that the current system is broken and unequitable, people using it, need to have accountability "….
Blame will not pay the bills .

steven steven
May '19

"Let's not forget that 100 BILLION dollars is OWED, so this is money that needs to be paid back, not dumped on a 21 year old young adult." It can't be paid in full. It was overpromised from day one.


Get back to the topic please. Enough with the political discussion here. Teacher Aides are hired to assist students with special needs. More students have learning disabilities today and that is why you did not see teacher aides a few years ago. It would be better to hire in class support teachers for special ed students but many districts make the aides do all the work, as if they were the special ed teacher, for low wages, no benefits and hardly even a lunch break. Let’s get back to that and stay on the topic the OP started.

resident08
May '19

Unfortunately HMS is going to continue to lose good people. Lots of changes going on next year too. New ideas to either put in a new security system or make an exit from Hatchery Hill onto Robins Court. Both cost about $200,000-250,000.

concernedparent concernedparent
May '19

What is the topic? It is a fact that lowered-paid non-tenured get the boot first in any budget shrinking situation in Public schools. Does more need to be said?


Was a reason given to why the aids were cut? Will there be additional cuts to staff and/or programs?

Retired Retired
May '19

First, teaching aides are NOT only there to help special needs students...the entire school (student population of 400+ and growing by the minute) has less than 10 aides for classroom assistance; a couple of those being personal aides for a specific student. The Title I aide (just one) is the only one federally funded, and they are the only one mandated to assist academically challenged students/classrooms.

Secondly, there isn’t an aide for each teacher and/or class. Don, you assume incorrectly.

Third, aides are not tenured; so they do not necessarily get to keep a position in the school if it’s eliminated. They have a yearly contract, and can be let go at any time. iJay, as usual you’re barking up the wrong tree.

Aides are there to assist in all aspects of education. They assist the teachers and staff in MANY ways such as helping struggling students, covering classes if there’s a meeting or no substitute, recess/lunch/door duties, make copies if needed, take a child up/down an elevator, assistance with projects in the building, and the list goes on.

Please stop making this into a “teachers are lazy” thread. Since most of you don’t work in schools, how can you possibly know how the system works so well? It’s one thing to have an opinion on a subject, but the repugnant way some of you deliver your opinion is awful. If you’d like to know more about the who/what/where/when/why of this decision then contact the Principal, or Superintendent.

tripsy tripsy
May '19

Tripsy - Well said!

Isabella
May '19

Tripsy I have been in Education and aides are there for special need kids, disabled kids and one on one aides, sometimes the other aides are for the cafeteria or library. That’s it. But they are not just there to do anything else, if they are they are violating student IEPs and what aides are supposed to be used in school for. Five special ed teacher job are open in the district so if the aides are being replaced by special Ed teachers it proves that what they were used for to begin with. The aides do not just copy or file, they all work with the kids.

Plus the director of special services was just fired so something is not being done right there.

resident08
May '19

Well said Tripsy!

Amazing how so many people know so much about teaching/education yet they have never spent a day in the classroom !

Ziggy Ziggy
May '19

Taxpayer, as a former teacher, I NEVER got paid for summer vacations. We were paid on working a certain number of days per year. These days did not include days off or summers.

Sport
May '19

Bottom line for any situation today …...review , evaluate and identify the issues.....Then eliminate the excess cost's, realign the accountability and responsibilities .

steven steven
May '19

resident08, what? They have many jobs in schools, like I mentioned, which have nothing to do with IEP’s. They help in every aspect of the school. Aides are not just for special needs. I didn’t say they just copy or file, I said in addition to being in the classroom they also do many things, like make copies, etc. They are part of a whole education team.
Also, just because the director was fired doesn’t mean that “something wasn’t being done right”...it could mean various things.

tripsy tripsy
May '19

Educators and paraprofessionals all over the state are losing their jobs. Tenured teachers are being cut as well. It is all to SAVE MONEY. Our governor has cut millions in funding to public schools, and unfortunately the students and teachers are going to be worked to the bone. Paraprofessionals, aka aides, are hired by the school district to work with students who require the supervision, as in a 1:1 aide. Now, school districts are pushing into a more "inclusive" classroom environment where special education students work with general education students with both teachers in the room. Aides are typically for ambulatory, autistic, behavioral or physical needs.

kelleo22 kelleo22
May '19

We spend an awful lot on special needs in this country and an embarrassingly small amount on our most gifted students. Who will lead the future ? (Whoever they are they will need more aides)

Mrs Willis Mrs Willis
May '19

Wow, Murphy has cut millions in funding to schools. There’s a statement I never expected to see on HL

Totally wrong but delightful to see nonetheless.

StrangerDanger StrangerDanger
May '19

kelleo22, paraprofessionals/aides are not only 1:1, though they can be. Personal aides have the 1:1 position, but the other, general and Title l, work in the classroom and not 1:1.

tripsy tripsy
May '19

The school district could cut in other areas of the budget that does not impact learning in the classroom

Retired Retired
May '19

Like the suoer....

Acl76 Acl76
May '19

Mrs Willis

Your statement is a joke about special needs getting more aid than the gifted !! Of course they are getting more aid !!! They need assistance in the classroom because of learning disabilities. Who will be future leaders? You are suggesting the gifted will be and not any special needs student Discriminatory statement !!


As long as the taxpayers in this state hemorrhage dollars for education, said taxpayer has a right to bitch and complain. We pay a lot for education in this state. More than most. Why does it cost so much? Unions probably. Pensions too. Put all teachers on a GS pay scale like federal government. Period. Full Stop. Sorry just wanted to sound like our jackass Governor.


"We pay a lot for education in this state. More than most."

Home buyers pay a lot for homes in this state, More than most.

If the older generation wants to profit on the sale of a house, the person buying it needs to make more money to buy it- this is why salaries are higher here, so baby boomers can cash out 500k on a house they bought for 20k.

Follow the money.

dodgebaal dodgebaal
May '19

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/slideshows/the-10-best-us-states-for-education

crazyjane crazyjane
May '19

We pay less than a few states for public education and receive the number 1 or 2 public schools rating in return, depending on the survey or year.

StrangerDanger StrangerDanger
May '19

it still amazes me that so many people think they know how best to run a school, and how much they should pay for it. but i really never hear that about anything you buy. why don't you complain even more about how much a cell phone costs? don't you have opinions on how you could fix apple so as to drop the price of an iPhone? why not complain about how much gasoline costs? not the added taxes. why does exxon mobile charge so much to get the gas to the pump? why does the ceo make so much money? you do realize a superintendent of the Hackettstown school system is like the ceo of a medium sized company, with many, many employees? yet few talk about how any other businesses are run.

ken e
May '19

Not even close Ken e. Most of those things you listed are a consumer's choice to purchase. It's the age old argument that not everyone is paying their fair share when it comes to education. If someone is paying $12,000 a year in property tax, and $8000-9000 of it goes to education and they have zero children, is it fair that a neighbor with 5 children pays the same?

There are so many states that have good or as good education as NJ and don't get socked with hefty bills. A CEO is not the same as a Superintendent. Corporations need to answer to shareholders, not taxpayers. And the education system seldom answers to it's taxpayers. It's a beast with a large appetite because it's fed by incompetents.

If you think that gas is too expensive you don't have to buy it. If I don't want to use the public school system, I still have to pay for it.


A lot of these problems arose when learning abilities were integrated into one classroom i.e. all levels of learners thrown together for one teacher to deal with. Maybe it would be better to separate students by ability once again and teachers could teach to the class as opposed to the needs of specific students.


There is a great benefit to integrating classrooms to both the gifted and those with disabilities. There have been many studies over the years that prove it and it clearly shows with the consistently high ranking of NJ schools that it is effective.
Apparently NJ has a way to go in teaching empathy though! Sometimes we need try to put ourselves in someone else's shoes and think about how we would feel, cope etc. It takes a village!

Mel81 Mel81
May '19

Don, you've likely already used the public school system. YOUR education is what you're "paying forward".

On the flip side... the neighbor with 5 children is producing 5 future tax payers who will be contributing to the current generation's social security payments, among other things. Should people without children not be allowed to collect?

ianimal ianimal
May '19

School districts should be accountable for how they spend tax dollars educating children. I think we spend to much money on sports and administrative cost and not enough on things like technology, building maintenance , and early education programs like pre-k programs.

Retired Retired
May '19

Actually Don, there aren’t a lot of states with education as good as NJ. When you are number one or two, everyone else is not.

Of the ones that are close, a few pay more, all pay comparative.

StrangerDanger StrangerDanger
May '19

I’m sure those studies are completely unbiased. That was typed in sarcasm font.


SD, not one to two but five

https://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/articles/how-states-compare


So we pay the most to be ranked 5th? And Florida comes in 6th and they have some pretty low taxes.


But since our taxes go to HHS, for context our local tax contributions result in a ranking ranking of:

5513 nationally (out of 17245), or 68th percentile nationally.
190 within the state (out of 438), or 57th percentile in NJ.

https://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/new-jersey/districts/hackettstown-public-schools/hackettstown-high-school-12565

From
https://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/new-jersey

justintime justintime
May '19

iJay --- NJ is indeed, according to your source, Number 2 in Public Education K-12; you segmented it to just HS where we are number 5. https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/rankings/education/prek-12

In rate of spending per student, in this study NJ ranked 4th. The bar chart shows the relative spending per admin, teaching, overhead, etc. which is kind of cool.
https://www.governing.com/topics/education/gov-education-funding-states.html

So we spend at 4th, we get 2nd. It appears you get what you pay, and then a little more in NJ.....

But JIT's research is the important one for HHS. I do wonder how being in the top third bets you to the 68th percentile. Nonetheless, when one views JITs ranking against the data I have provided, an interesting profile emerges. I think one mught use this to be better armed for your next "talk" with Mr. Mango and anyone responsible for spending your money on our kids. And that is:

Mr Mango (if he's the right guy???), IF NJ spends the 4th largest amount per student, and NJ is number two for public education then WHY is HHS in the middle of the NJ pack and in the 68th percentile nationwide, and what are you doing about it? Given the results, given the money, what's your plan to squeeze better value from our bucks?

He might say: NJ per pupil funding in 2016 was $20,385, Hackettstown spent 17,254, up from 16,330 in 2015 so what did you expect?

The first HS I could find the cost per pupil was #10 in JITs list, Elizabeth High School. They spent 21,387 per student in 2016. Mendham Township spent over $27,000.

Based solely on the dollars, I would say HHS is doing pretty good to be middle of the NJ pack while spending less than average and far less than superior. But I still say this is the tack to take with Mango et al. That is, we spend the most, prove that we get our $$$ worth based on the results. Can Mango prove, based on the money and the results, where does his governance rank? https://www.nj.com/education/2017/04/how_much_new_jersey_schools_spend_per_student.html

Follow the money. Just saying......

strangerdanger strangerdanger
May '19

I believe the per-pupil costs do not include teacher pensions and teacher retiree medical. The true cost is much larger than what is quoted. To me this seems way to excessive.


Cleo, included. Second paragraph I believe.

Excessive. Perhaps. But it does appear you get what you pay for. The question is, does HHS get what it pays for? And that’s still a perhaps. Would love to see a world class standard of returns per $$$ spent.

StrangerDanger StrangerDanger
May '19

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