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No RIFs planned in Harrison schools

by Jennifer Biller

STAFF WRITER

A Harrison County Schools official said this week that despite declining enrollment, there will be no job losses for the upcoming school year.

"There will be some transfers, but nobody's losing a job," said Superintendent Carl Friebel. "Through careful personnel management and retirements, we're trying to trim where we can."

Other counties in the region have sent out reductions in force (RIF) notices, said Bill White, UniServ consultant for the West Virginia Education Association Region 9.

"Harrison County has not had a single RIF since 1988," White said. "It is probably the only county in this part of the state that hasn't RIFed for next year."

While no layoffs are scheduled, at least a dozen job transfers will occur in Harrison County, White said.

"They have the attitude of working with their employees and we commend them highly for it," he said.

White believes the county's levy structure and budget have also contributed to its ability to maintain employees.

The layoffs in the other counties can be attributed to declining student enrollment, White said.

"This part of the state is losing population and that has a dramatic influence on funding," he said. "For every 18 students you drop, you lose a professional position."

This year, RIF notices in the area were issued by around March 15 so that employee hearings can be completed by Monday, White said.

Proposed transfers have to be sent out by Sunday, so those hearings can be completed by May 7, he added.

Staff writer Jennifer Biller can be reached at 626-1449 or jbiller@exponent-telegram.com.

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