Pittsburgh Public Schools board OKs furloughs for 280 workers

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The board of Pittsburgh Public Schools tonight voted to furlough 280 school-based employees, including 176 K-12 teachers, 14 pre-K teachers, 59 paraprofessionals, 12 adjuncts, 10 other pre-K professionals and nine technical-clerical workers.

The employees are represented by the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers and were among the 3,477 school-based employees the district had this past school year. The latest layoffs represent about 8 percent of that group.

"I am sad to do this," said board member Theresa Colaizzi, who added that she realizes that in today's economy "we don't have a choice."

Coupled with 17 secretarial-clerical workers and four central office workers who previously received notices, the district is laying off 301 employees this school year. In addition, four teachers who were full time will be part time.

Superintendent Linda Lane believes it is the largest number of teacher layoffs in the district's history.

The teacher furloughs are part of a plan aimed at saving $29.1 million over a school year through workforce reductions, school closings and reconfigurations, feeder pattern changes and larger class sizes.

Some of the other furloughs are part of a plan to save an additional $13.1 million.

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Education writer Eleanor Chute: echute@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1955.


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