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Pre-K-2

Literacy

Safety & Social-


Security Emotional

College &
Instructional
Career
Leadership
Readiness

ENHANCED ACADEMIC PLAN


2017-2018 Budget Priorities

Abstract
The 2017-2018 Academic Plan identifies the continued work in five priority areas. It was
collaboratively developed during multiple Cabinet meetings after a close review and analysis of
principal and administrator input.

February 10, 2017


Contents

Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

Theme 1Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 2 Literacy Focus. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

Theme 2Social Emotional Supports K-12 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4

Theme 3College and Career Readiness. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

Theme 4Instructional Leadership/Administrative Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

Theme 5Safety and Security . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7

Budget Implications and Conclusion. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7

Attachments:
A. Budget spreadsheet with
o Budget Option A
o Budget Option B

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Introduction
The 2017-2018 Academic Plan continues to focus on the five core areas established in last years budget
development. District and School Building Leadership are in agreement that Pre-K-2 Literacy and Social-
Emotional Health and Development are an ongoing and major focus for the District in our efforts to
improve academic achievement. College & Career Readiness continues to be an area for District attention
in order to promote access and opportunity for all students beyond the P-12 educational experience. A
positive learning environment to support these endeavors is essential and can be provided by supporting
the building principals in their efforts to be more effective Instructional Leaders and strengthening Safety
and Security in every building. This document was designed to provide an overview of these five areas
for discussion throughout the budget process.

Process: All Principals and Directors were provided current budget documents and required to examine
for redundancies, gaps, and possibilities for reallocation. Principals and Directors were then asked to
provide a list of proposed new items that would strengthen the program for 16-17. These proposed
budget increases were studied by Cabinet and clarification sought when necessary from the stakeholders.
New requests were collected on a spreadsheet and sorted in a variety of ways for Cabinet to determine
which requests fell into the priorities of the Academic Plan. A final review of all budget requests was
conducted at the February administrative meeting with all principals and directors.

Themes: In early 2016, in preparation for the 2016-2017 school year, themes emerged which form the
structure of the Academic Plan. These are: K-2 Literacy, Social-Emotional, College and Career Readiness,
Administrative Support for Instructional Leadership, and Safety & Security. The work is not complete in
these areas. This years budget process included an identification of ongoing needs in these areas so that
we can meet our goals for these priorities. Another emerging theme in this years process is in the area
of elementary mathematics. For 17-18, we will continue our laser-like focus on early literacy, however
we recognize that we also need to prepare to shift our attention to math.

Focus for 2017-2018: Center efforts on P-2 literacy and social-emotional needs, while also addressing
enrollment growth and other mandates. The Newcomer School for entering English as a New Language
students, and a redesign of the Alternative Learning Center, fall under the social-emotional theme, but
are captured in their own program proposals. Finally, an additional priority for 2017-2018 is the new
middle school at 50 N. Lark due to our growing enrollment.

Budget Implications: This plan identifies the highest level of support for the Academic Plan. Two budget
options are attached to this plan. Budget Option A reflects all of the Academic Plan outlined in this
document. Budget Option B reflects reductions in the Academic Plan. Both Budget Option A and Budget
Option B identifies items that can be supported by Community Schools funding. The final total on both
options shows the impact on General Fund after Community Schools funding is taken into consideration.

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Theme 1Pre-K-2 Literacy $742,800

Overview: In early 2016, principals and central office staff identified P-2 as a critical time and
opportunity to address the needs of students in order to positively influence future outcomes at
the 3rd grade level and beyond. This led to the development of the 2016-2017 Academic Plan
that provided us the human and material resources to focus on P-2 literacy.

This year, a core group (Assistant Superintendent for Elementary, Director of Curriculum &
Instruction, Early Childhood Director, Elementary Instructional Supervisor, and RtI Coordinator)
meet regularly to monitor the implementation of the plan, and work closely with the principals
to ensure a consistent message and approach. Our focus is on the implementation of a new
literacy program at K-2, a new formative assessment for the foundational skills, a new structure
of literacy instruction that includes a double-dose of explicit reading instruction, and
professional development. While we experienced some expected implementation bumps, close
monitoring has allowed us to make mid-course corrections. The mid-year data is not yet
complete, but will be available in late February or early March.

Additional needs have emerged in this area.

A. Pre-Kindergarten($250,000) The current number of Pre-K students is around 1000,


including 3 year olds. 2016-2017 has brought to fruition most of the strategies developed
in last years plan; the Pre-K department is in place and focused on early literacy in our
youngest students. Last year, we began the process of implementing an incremental
increase to the pre-K per pupil allotment at all our sites in order to attract and keep staff.
Proposed this year is the second of the incremental increases based on fair market rate
set for the county by NYS that will ensure adequate per pupil allotment for quality
programming (certified and fairly compensated teachers, teacher retention for continuity
and reduced transitions, and overhead costs for off-site programs). This cycle of
incremental increases is expected to cease in the 2018-2019 school year.

B. Teacher Assistants($192,800) Last year, as a part of the Academic Plan, the District
placed 5 TAs in elementary buildings (AHES, Giffen, SPA, TOAST, NAA) to support the
literacy plan at the K-1 level. These individuals have received training alongside the
reading teachers and coaches in literacy and our new literacy program. Anecdotally,
according to the elementary principals, these trained individuals are making an impact on
the classrooms, although quantitative data is not yet available. In this second wave of
the literacy plan, we would like to add TAs that will be trained in the same way to four
elementary building (DCS, ASH, SAA, PHES).
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C. Elementary STEM Supervisor($136,000) Currently, the Elementary Instructional
Supervisor leads all core academic areas at the elementary level (ELA, Math, Science, and
Social Studies) and supervises all instructional coaches. The recommendation is to add
an Elementary STEM Supervisor to focus on math and science, thus allowing the current
Elementary Supervisor to keep a laser-like focus on the K-2 literacy initiative. This
structure will allow the Instructional Supervisor for Literacy greater time to support the
principals, and train the reading teachers and classroom teachers in our literacy initiative.
The addition of a STEM Supervisor will also help us prepare for the next phase of
strengthening the program in mathematics and implementing an integrated approach for
science & technology, in alignment with the new standards in this content area.

D. Reading Teachers($164,000) Last year, we added 3.5 reading teachers to the


elementary buildings (NAA .5, DCS, SPA, TOAST) after a careful review of our data (NWEA,
AIMSweb, & NYS 3-8 Testing). A mid-year review of this years data (Fall NWEA & Winter
AIMSweb) reveals an additional need for reading teachers in just two schools:

Albany School of Humanitiesenrollment is now over 600 students


and operates with 2 reading teachers; the data suggests an addition
of 1 reading teacher will better meet the needs of the children and the
demands of the K-2 literacy plan.
Giffen Elementaryenrollment is now over 600 students, and
operates with 4 reading teachers. While we began the work of data-
driven assignments several years ago and added reading teachers to
Giffen in the 15-16 school year, we did not add any last year, despite
growing enrollment and the requirements of the double-dose model in
this four-deep elementary building.

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Theme 2Social Emotional K-12 $451,000

Overview: The District continues to focus on the social-emotional needs of all students.
Additionally, the development of a Code of Conduct aligned to the Attorney Generals report
compels us to provide greater degrees of social-emotional support on site so that students can
work through issues and stay in school. Our students must be taught strategies necessary that
will help them navigate successfully in the school community and to access the academic
program. The comprehensive academic program can only succeed when the social-emotional
needs of our students are met.

A. Social-Emotional($451,000) As a result of the 2016-2017 Academic Plan, the


District was able to begin the process of ensuring that appropriate staffing is
available in each building site by adding 6.5 FTEs last year: Behavior Specialists
(3), Social Worker (1), and Psychologists (2.5).
This was an excellent start, but additional staff is required to provide the full suite
of socio-emotional support to buildings. The following staffing requests would
provide consistent support for students at every building and ensure a fulltime
psychologist in every building. Community Schools funds will provide for 1.5 social
workers (AHES .5, ALC .5, AHS .5)* and 2.0 behavior specialists (TOAST .5, SPA .5,
AHES .5, PHES .5)*. Proposed for the general fund are:
2 Behavioral Specialists (1 SAAfalling off grants; 1 PHES/MMS)*
1.5 Social Workers (1 AHS; .5 Abrookin)*
2 Psychologists (.5 Bilingual-DCS/DW; .5 Out-of-district; 1 AHS)*

B. Culturally Responsive EducationAlthough no cost is associated with this


professional development initiative, it is an important component of our plan to
address the social-emotional needs of our students. To date, about 120 staff, plus
50 administrators, have been trained in culturally responsive education. Cohort 4
will begin in March and be co-facilitated by CSDA staff as we begin to grow our
own capacity to deliver a culturally responsive educational program to students.

*While specific schools are identified, deployment to individual buildings could change in response to need
as we continue the roll-out of the full plan.

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Theme 3College & Career Readiness $428,000

Overview: In this Enhanced Academic Plan, one priority is on P-2. At the opposite end is College
and Career Readiness to ensure that ongoing opportunities and avenues for success are
accessible to all students. The middle schools and high school continue to focus on college and
career readiness, as well as middle school/high school alignment, to ensure that all students
come to the high school with the same experience and readiness, and all high school students
are ready for college or career. The following is proposed:

A. The AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) college and career


readiness system continues to grow in the district. Proposed for next year are two
additional schools, the New MS and Delaware Community School, to join Albany
HS, Myers MS, Hackett MS, and North Albany Academy. The contract cost for AVID
for all six schools will be approximately $36,000; $30,000 already sits in the base
budget. Both Hackett and Myers have requested a full time teacher to staff five
AVID elective classes, one for each team, in each building. Total budget requests
are as follows:
Contract increase -- $6,000
2 FTEs--$164,000 (Hackett & Myers)
2 Site Coordinator Stipends--$12,000 (New MS, DCS)

B. Middle School Academic Intervention ServicesAnother aspect of ensuring that


students are college & career ready is to provide them with the support they need
to access the academic program. The Secondary Transformation Committee has
met regularly to discuss middle school/high school alignment and equity across
the middle school system. This was a timely discussion given the opening of the
new middle school at 50 N. Lark. In order to run a consistent and equitable
program across the system, the following is proposed to conduct an AIS program
at Myers that is equitable with Hacketts model; a model that has demonstrated
success.
Math AIS teachers--$164,000 (Myers)
Literacy AIS teacher--$82,000 (Myers)

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Theme 4Instructional Leadership/Administrative Support $351,600
Overview: Principals continue to express a need for administrative support due to enrollment,
APPR (evaluation) responsibilities, and to attend to the business of being an instructional leader.
Last year, five Assistant Principals were added to: Albany High School (2), Myers, Giffen, and
Sheraton Prep, as well as one at New Scotland in lieu of a HSC. Assistant Principals for two
Priority Schools (AHES and TOAST) are prioritized in the overall budget proposal documents for
next year and not included in this document. The following is proposed for this year:

A. Elementary Assistant Principal (ASH)Albany School of Humanities is a P-6 magnet


school with enrollment that has recently topped 600 students. Funding for the ASH
assistant principal is offset by eliminating the shared Home School Coordinator position
earmarked for TOAST and ASH. ($48,400)

B. Home School Coordinator (SAA)Schuyler is a Priority School. In view of lower


enrollment (320), rather than add an Assistant Principal, the recommendation is to add a
second Home School Coordinator to support the Community Schools model. ($82,000)

C. Testing Coordinator/Instructional SupervisionNYS 3-8 Computer-Based Testing will


require greater support to administrators and staff and a need for district-wide, ongoing
testing coordination. As this position sits in ODAT (Office of Data, Assessment &
Technology), additional duties of this position would be supervision of the Instructional
Technology and Media Specialists departments. ($136,000)

D. Fine Arts SupervisorCSDA is one of the three largest districts in the Capital Region and
yet provides the least direct administrative support for its Music and Art programs. This
proposal recommends abolishing the .2 Art Chair and the .2 Music Chair and replacing
those positions with a fulltime Fine Arts Supervisor dedicated to leading the 50+ teachers
who serve our students in these encore areas. ($85,200)

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Theme 5: Safety and Security $158,400
Overview: Safety and Security is a priority for the City School District of Albany. Proposed
additional Hall Monitors.

A. Hall MonitorsThe High School Principal and the Director of Security have
requested the addition of 3 Hall Monitors. Reasons include: late day/night
supervision, metal detector coverage, peak/lunch support, and enrollment
increases that result in higher need of these support personnel.

Financial Implications:
The attached spreadsheet outlines two budget options for consideration. Option A
outlines the full funding required for the proposed items. Option B reflects the possibility
of Community Schools funding for some proposed items that fall into the Community
Schools model.

TOTAL Cost (Option A): $2,131,800

Conclusion
Historically, the State Aid funding is not finalized until late March. Our second largest
revenue source is from State Aid. Until that time, the budget is constantly undergoing
revisions as discussions occur. Meanwhile, guidance into the parameters of Community
School funding is being sought from our partners at the State Education Department.
Cabinet welcomes input into this Academic Plan as we go forward with this revision
process.