Budget shortfall to eliminate assistant principal positions at Wareham Public Schools

By Matthew Bernat | Feb 20, 2018

Assistant principals at Wareham Public Schools have been told their positions will be eliminated for the coming school year due to a looming budget shortfall, sources told Wareham Week.

Those cuts, and other drastic, yet to be confirmed measures, will likely be discussed at a public hearing scheduled during the School Committee’s Feb. 28 meeting. The hearing will start at 7 p.m. in the Wareham Middle School auditorium.

“Changes in the budget will seriously impact how our district will be operating,” Superintendent Dr. Kimberly Shaver-Hood told School Committee members earlier this month. “These potential changes are monumental and will change how education is offered in Wareham.”

The school district’s draft budget currently calls for spending $29.4 million for the upcoming school year. That figure contrasts with what town officials say is available due to lackluster revenues. In early February, Town Administrator Derek Sullivan presented a draft budget to Selectmen with $28.4 million allocated for schools.

Shaver-Hood did not confirm that the positions will be eliminated when asked by Wareham Week. She did urge residents to attend the Feb. 28 hearing to learn more about potential education cuts. Shaver-Hood noted that many options were on the table to close the budget gap.

“We’re still in the process of looking at every possible scenario,” said Shaver-Hood. “I can’t say exactly what those scenarios are.”

Comments (10)
Posted by: cranky pants | Feb 21, 2018 07:13

Didn't we just give her a 2% raise and now we're laying off important staff...

Did I miss something ?

Posted by: Bluebell3333 | Feb 21, 2018 07:56

What the hell! With all of the commercial development in our town we should be rolling in revenue. We have every national chain and soon a second new hotel. Where is all of this tax money going?





Posted by: Summerwind | Feb 21, 2018 09:07

2% is a drop in the bucket to what the shortfall is in the budget. She was given the raise because Wareham is a high risk school system - low test scores, behavioral issues and high participation in school choice program. You have to have someone with experience with the school system to have a few years under their belt to start to implement changes. Leadership turnover isn’t good for students or faculty. School choice is really hurting the school system. Beyond the $ aspect, you have parents that put their energy into other districts and parental involvement is an indicator of student achievement.

Where is the tax $? These stores and hotels came to Wareham because the town gave huge tax breaks thinking the revenue from sales tax would make up for those cuts. It doesnt.

Lastly, the elephant in the room is an over ride. Wareham hasn’t had one in years and won’t based on the economics of the town. People don’t support it and therefore the schools suffer. The reality is, 2.5% doesn’t cut it when expenses are increasing 4% or more. The shortfall either has to be funded or you make cuts. It’s a shame; the kids suffer, the parents move their kids out and the faculty morale continues to drop.


Posted by: Bluebell3333 | Feb 21, 2018 09:31

Let me get this right. The super was given a 2% increase because the schools were performing poorly?



Posted by: WWreader | Feb 21, 2018 09:48

Summerwind, where do you get your facts? First, tax breaks for businesses in Wareham were not "huge."  Second, the hotel has already brought in more than was expected in hotel tax. You can see this if you look at the town budget, where the real numbers are. And the last override that was defeated had plenty of money for the schools in it but was not supported by the majority including parents, and many school employees who claimed there was already too much waste in the schools. Go figure.

Posted by: Summerwind | Feb 21, 2018 10:02

No because it’s was the least they could give her to keep her around. Whether you agree or not, Wareham’s failing schools are not a result of bad leadership or faculty. It’s a result of lacking resources and the ability of these people to do more with less resources. What do I mean? When you have a student that has behavioral issues that may need additinal monitoring but due to budget cuts the school doesn’t have an aid to help the student, he or she continues to be a problem and they impact other student’s learning experience. You can’t blame leadership or faculty for budgetary restraints or social ills of the town. People on here constantly tout working within the budget, that personally we all have to so why shouldn’t they. Well, this is what you get with the budget provided - you get what you pay for.


Posted by: Summerwind | Feb 21, 2018 10:07

So WW reader where is the waste? If there is so much waste why hasn’t the committe worked with leadership to identify. If it’s so huge why can’t it be identified? You’re right that voters rejected the override so people shouldn’t really complain when you have at risk schools and not enough resources to educate your student’s.

Posted by: WWreader | Feb 21, 2018 11:02

Don't ask me. Ask the parents and teachers who voted against it. Ask the seniors who said they didn't have kids in school and voted against it.  I voted for the override because I want to live in a town that has good schools, a fully funded library and COA, and a fully staffed police and municipal maintenance department. But the voters in Wareham voted it down by a large margin. Go figure.

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Feb 21, 2018 12:26



Without an inkling of preconception I would like to ask an open-minded question about our school system's head honcho.


What things (yes, multiple things are expected) has she done to deserve her huge salary and that raise?  Giving her the raise "to keep her around" makes her sound like the best of the best.  Please prove it.  Should be easy to do if she's so great.


There should be several wonderful things per year like programs, successful efforts, and success stories in general that she is 100% responsible for.  Being 100% responsible does not include riding on coattails of the dedicated staff below.  Please show us.  Please make a list.

Posted by: Bluebell3333 | Feb 21, 2018 15:22

I am constantly seeing blame being placed on the president for everything and anything. He is the leader and ultimately the one responsible. The same standard goes for the substandard and underperforming superintendent.

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