At the recent Brigantine City Council Meeting, Mayor Andy Simpson admitted that the Brigantine School District approved plans to consolidate the island’s two, half empty schools.
Reports suggest that a portion of the to-be-shuttered school could be torn down, with the land being sold off to developers.
10 or more Brigantine teaching & management positions could be cut. Taxpayer savings would be substantial.
Kudos to the Brigantine Taxpayers Association, relentless with their pressure to consolidate the two, half-empty schools.
NOTE: Mayor Simpson, unlike his predecessor Phil Guenther, has been in favor of school consolidation and reduction of duplicated positions within the district. Guenther wielded great power by handing out well-paid school district jobs to those who remained loyal, particularly those with voting rights in Brigantine.
As the Brigantine School District enrollment drops below 500 students, there’s increased pressure from NJ State to ensure the district is operating in a financially responsible way.
Simpson insists he won’t cut jobs. Most remain skeptical. The State of NJ has been reducing funding, and mandating that ALL municipalities do everything they can to cut cost and be more efficient. Sharing services and reducing redundant work force personnel is high on that list.
Simpson will meet Brigantine North School teachers, management and other personnel to discuss the issues at hand.
Simpson looks to restructuring Brigantine school employee contracts as well, just like he did with new hires within the Brigantine public safety departments.
The issue of Brigantine School District layoffs is a real possibility, say those who wish to remain anonymous, fearing retribution.
The Brigantine School Board has formed a committee to find ways of cutting costs and reducing the bloat.
It was noted that the Brigantine School Board does not record and post their meetings to the web. It’s rare to see an agenda or meeting minutes.
The next Brigantine City Council meeting is scheduled for Feb 20, at 6p.