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Raton School Board Approves Reduction in Force Plan

By Marty Mayfield
KRTN Multi-Media

The Raton Board of Education met Monday evening in a special meeting with a single item on the agenda, to approve a Reduction In Force plan for the Raton School system.

Superintendent Andy Ortiz told the four member board that he was asking for the board’s approval on a reduction in force plan to be implemented on Tuesday May 9, 2017. The board was familiar with the plan and with no discussion they approved the plan unanimously and adjourned the meeting, it lasted about five minutes.

According to Ortiz the Raton Schools are looking at a major budget deficit of close to $900,000 this year. Part of the deficit comes from the way the school system was reorganized after closing Columbian and Kearny schools and consolidating into a three building plan which resulted in Raton losing the small school certification. A declining enrollment also adds to that deficit.

Ortiz in his first year as superintendent has inherited a mess noted former superintendent Butch McGowen, who is helping Ortiz with budget. Plans are in the works to reestablish the small school certification that Raton would have had, had former superintendent Neil Terhune not closed the two school buildings. The final numbers aren’t in yet but had the two schools not been closed the deficit would still be there, but smaller, by how much has not been determined.

Ortiz will now begin the painful process of notifying those that will be affected by the cuts. Programs will also be cut but Ortiz noted he wanted to inform the staff and faculty in person before it became public as to what cuts were going to be made.

Led by School Board President Kathy Honeyfield the four member board unanimously approved the reduction in force plan presented to them by superintendent Andy Ortiz Monday night .

Led by School Board President Kathy Honeyfield the four member board unanimously approved the reduction in force plan presented to them by superintendent Andy Ortiz Monday night .

2 comments on “Raton School Board Approves Reduction in Force Plan

  1. Anonymous says:

    This is a vicious circle…cutting staff and programs create a school environment that is not beneficial or attractive to students and families. This leads to the reduction in numbers that leads to less funding and bigger deficits.

  2. Sharon Gatti-Carson says:

    Thank you Board of Education for the work you are doing to support Mr. Ortiz and the educators in Raton Public Schools. As a Ratonian, I continue to be involved in supporting our schools in any possible way as we move forward.

    The leadership of Mr. Ortiz and the support from the Board of Education, along with the ENTIRE community of Raton will be essential as we meet the challenges of these issues. Raton Public Schools deserve our energy and commitment in continuing to making them a great place for our children–the FUTURE of Raton.

    Happy Teacher Appreciation Day! We are proud of the educators that serve our children!

    Sharon Gatti-Carson

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