Staffing Adjustments 2016-17 FAQ

Staffing Adjustments 2016-17 FAQ
Posted on 07/14/2016


Seattle Public Schools (SPS) supports families in selecting schools and programs that best meet the needs of their children. There are a number of educational options provided to SPS families including: neighborhood schools, option schools, the Highly Capable Cohort (HCC) pathway, and school enrollment outside of their assigned neighborhood school if space is available.

This commitment to family choice is supported during the open enrollment and school choice process (mid-February through May 31) and can result in enrollment fluctuations and staffing changes at individual schools.

Why does Seattle Public Schools make staffing adjustments multiple times?

Every winter, the district produces initial enrollment projections for the following school year. These enrollment projections are used to assess and plan for staffing, space and material needs. The district supports family choice, so we also conduct an annual school choice process beginning in February.

During the school choice process families can apply to have their children attend a school outside their attendance area. After the school choice process ends on May 31, waitlist moves are conducted and additional entering kindergarten students enroll, school projections for the fall are updated to reflect these changes.

Projections generated in June support more accurate staffing allocation for schools and create more stable situations for our schools leading into the fall. Fall staff adjustments, if necessary, are made again after school begins.

How do mitigation requests work?

Each spring, schools are allowed to submit requests for additional staffing via mitigation.

By definition, these requests represent staffing above standards, and are not driven by changes in enrollment projections. Mitigation requests are typically granted to support unique school and service delivery models (e.g. K-8 or language immersion) as well as schools with high needs or multiple programs. These requests are not always granted, but held if and until funding is allocated for that purpose.

Why doesn’t the district wait until June to do all of the school staffing?

Early staffing in February, although not final, is needed so SPS does not miss out on hiring top candidates, especially in hard to fill positions like special education. In addition, early enrollment projections are conducted so we meet state law which requires we notify staff if there is a need for a Reduction in Force (RIF) by May 15, and so we can prepare buildings and begin purchasing resources for the district’s anticipated number of students.

What happened this year and what are the June 2016 enrollment projections?

The district made initial enrollment projections earlier than ever this year in order to support schools in their preliminary budget planning and staffing process. Initial enrollment projections were provided in early February.

Based on the June enrollment projections, we are expecting 53,107 students (headcount) for our 2016-17 school year, an increase of 783 students over last year’s official October 1 headcount.

How were June enrollment projections different than February?

While districtwide enrollment remained unchanged, enrollment projections by school shifted.

The June enrollment projections reflect open enrollment results, wait list moves, anticipated needs of each service/program and actual school capacity.

Will schools have other adjustments and how is the district working to mitigate disruptions to classrooms and students?

The next planned staffing adjustment will occur after students arrive in September. All staffing will be reviewed again in late September/early October.

A central funding reserve has been created to protect schools as much as possible from staffing reductions after the start of school in 2016. This reserve was created in direct response to our community’s request in previous years.

How were the June staffing adjustments generated?

Once the June enrollment projections were finalized, the data was sent to the budget team. The budget team used the same Weighted Student Staffing (WSS) formula that was used in February to generate a new staff allocation.



  • Preparation-conference-planning teacher (PCP)
  • Full-time employee (FTE)
  • Specialists include teachers who are not primary instructors for the students who provide education in such subjects as music, physical education or other specialists.

The following schools received a change in full-time employees from the February allocation as a result of the updated enrollment projections:


Staffing adjustments
School Teacher FTE PCP or specialist FTE
Adams (1.0) decrease
Arbor Heights 1.0 increase
B.F. Day (1.0) decrease
Cascadia (1.0) decrease
Dunlap (1.0) decrease (0.5) decrease
Emerson (1.0) decrease
Genessee Hill 1.0 increase
Green Lake 2.0 increase 0.5 increase
Greenwood (1.0) decrease
John Hay (1.0) decrease
Lafayette 1.0 increase
Lowell (1.0) decrease
Olympic View 1.0 increase 0.5 increase
Sacajawea 1.0 increase
Sand Point (1.0) decrease
Van Asselt (2.0) decrease
Viewlands (1.0) decrease
Wedgwood 1.0 increase 0.5 increase
West Seattle (1.0) decrease
Wing Luke (1.0) decrease



Staffing adjustments
School Teacher FTE PCP or specialist FTE
Broadview-Thomson 1.0 increase 0.5 increase
Catherine Blaine 1.5 increase
Licton Springs (1.0) decrease


Middle Schools

Staffing adjustments
School Teacher FTE
Denny (0.4) decrease
Eckstein (0.6) decrease
Hamilton International 0.8 increase
Jane Addams 1.4 increase
Madison 1.2 increase
McClure 0.8 increase
Mercer 2.4 increase
Washington 0.6 increase


High Schools

Staffing adjustments
School Teacher FTE
Ballard 2.0 increase
Garfield (0.8) decrease
Ingraham 2.0 increase
Nathan Hale (1.6) decrease
Rainier Beach (0.8) decrease
Chief Sealth (3.0) decrease
West Seattle 2.4 increase


Special Education


  • Instructional assistant (IA)
  • Full-time employee (FTE)

Click here to read the Special Education Service Matrix that offers more details about the services below.

Did you recalculate Special Education (SPED) enrollment projections?

Yes. The following schools received a change to their SPED staffing allocations:

Staffing adjustments
School Teacher FTE IA FTE
Aki Kurose MS Access (3.0) decrease
B.F Day Elem Resource (0.4) decrease
Ballard HS SM2 (1.0) decrease
Louisa Boren STEM K-8 Access (1.0) decrease
Cascadia Elem Resource 0.6 increase Resource 1.0 increase
Cleveland Social and Emotional (1.0) decrease
Coe Elem Resource (1.0) decrease
Eckstein MS Resource (0.2) decrease
Fairmount Park Elem Resource 0.2 increase
Franklin HS Social and Emotional (1.0) decrease
John Muir Elem Resource 0.2 increase Access (2.0) decrease
Kimball Elem Focus (1.0) decrease
Maple Elem
Access (1.0) decrease
Focus (1.0) decrease
MLK Jr Elem SM4 (1.0) decrease
Middle College HS Resource (0.2) decrease
Montlake Elem Resource 0.2 increase
Nathan Hale HS SM2 (1.0) decrease
Roxhill Elem Resource (0.2) decrease
Sand Point Elem Resource (0.2) decrease Resource (0.5) decrease
Chief Sealth Resource (0.6) decrease
SM4 1.0 increase
Van Asselt Elem Resource (0.4) decrease
Viewlands Elem SM4 (1.0) decrease
Washington MS Social and Emotional (0.5) decrease Social and Emotional (1.0) decrease
West Seattle HS SM2 (1.0) decrease
SM4 1.0 increase
SM2 (1.0) decrease
SM4 1.0 increase
Whitman MS
SM2 (1.0) decrease
Access (3.0) decrease
OVA/ BRIDGES Transition services for 18-21 age students 1.0 increase Transition services for 18-21 age students 2.0 increase

What happens to staff that have been displaced from a school because of lower enrollment?

Once displaced staff are notified, these individuals will be placed in open positions based on their qualifications per the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). Open hiring will continue for some positions. If enrollment increases at their original school, per the CBA, displaced staff have the right to return for two years, if a position is available. To exercise the right to return for the second year, they need to notify Human Resources by February 1 of the first year.

How were the July mitigations generated?

The Seattle School Board has allocated additional resources to allow the district to grant some, but not all, of the requests for mitigation. There have been 87 requests for mitigation submitted since March, representing a potential total cost of $7.7 million. Five requests were approved in March.

At this time, we are able to grant an additional 28 requests totaling approximately $2.2 million. This one-time funding will not automatically rollover into future years. Schools must submit requests for mitigation annually.

High Need Areas and Schools with Multiple Programs

Requests for high need areas and schools with multiple programs were prioritized first, focused on classroom staffing. The following schools received a change in full-time employees (FTE) via this mitigation process:


Staffing adjustments
School Additional FTE approved
Aki Kurose 1.0 increase
Beacon Hill 1.0 increase
Broadview Thomson 0.6 increase
Center School 0.6 increase
Cleveland 1.0 increase
Concord 1.0 increase
Dearborn Park 1.0 increase
Denny 1.0 increase
Fairmount Park 1.0 increase
Garfield 1.0 increase
Hamilton 0.8 increase
John Stanford 1.0 increase
McDonald 1.0 increase
Middle College 1.0 increase
Pathfinder 0.5 increase
Rainier Beach 1.0 increase
Sand Point 0.5 increase
Chief Sealth 0.5 increase
Thurgood Marshall 1.0 increase
Washington 1.0 increase


Assistant Principal

Staffing adjustments
School Additional FTE approved
Louisa Boren STEM K-8 0.5 increase
John Rogers Elem 0.5 increase
MLK Jr. Elem 0.5 increase
Northgate Elem 0.5 increase
World School 0.5 increase


Staffing adjustments
School Additional FTE approved
Madrona elem 0.7 increase
Thornton Creek elem 0.2 increase

 You can read more about the budget process on our Budget Office webpage.

For additional questions or to request expansion of the FAQ please email

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