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What services are provided by the proposed 49.125 English Composition Assistant for High Schools? Please review staffing at surrounding school systems to see how these services are provided there? Can these services be provided by other staff? What would be the impact of the elimination of all or some of these positions? What would be the budget savings if these positions were eliminated?

Question#: 6

ANSWER:

The high school English composition assistant (ECA) performs specialized instructional work in English composition by assisting English teachers by reading, providing feedback and guidance with student writing. Examples of duties include:

  • Assists the English teaching staff by working with individual students or small groups in all phases of the in-class writing process.
  • Reads and corrects student compositions; provides students oral and written guidance for revising and improving their written work.
  • Tutors students or small groups on matters of grammar, usage, mechanics, rhetoric, and other areas of writing skill deficiencies.
  • Instructs and support students in English computer lab.
  • Confers with the English resource teacher and the English department as a whole to evaluate and plan improvements in composition instruction.

The support ECAs provide cannot be performed by other staff as it requires expertise in English and writing. If the positions were eliminated or reduced, students would receive less frequent and specific feedback on their writing. Students would have fewer opportunities to receive individual writing instruction based on their area of need, and students who do not have access to computers at home would have fewer opportunities to access technology at school. The effects of the reduction or elimination of the positions would especially impact students who struggle with written expression, particularly students with disabilities, students impacted by poverty, and English Language Learners. English teachers would have to assume the responsibilities if the positions were eliminated or reduced. Staffing data from surrounding school systems is pending and will be provided as soon as it is available. The budget savings as a result of eliminating these positions, including employee benefits, is $2,327,002.

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