District Achieves Savings With Early Retirement Incentive

The Katonah Lewisboro school district estimates the savings to be $870,000 over the next five years.

Six teachers have opted into a state early retirement incentive program offered by the Katonah Lewisboro school district, netting an estimated $870,000 in savings over the next five years, according to Mike Jumper, assistant superintendent for business.

The board of education offered the program to 11 employees last month. While the district bears the cost of paying more into the retirement system, it can save money by phasing out higher paid school employees with lower paying ones.

The incentive program, which was signed into law by Gov. David Paterson last month, gives school districts the option of targeting employees who are eligible for retirement and crediting them one month of service for every year they have worked. A maximum of 36 months of credit can be accrued through the incentive.

The board of education accepted the six teacher resignations at its July 29 meeting.

The teachers retiring are:

  • James Friedman, John Jay Middle School, music
  • Lois Kurisko, Katonah Elementary School, music
  • Constance Labbe, Increase Miller, music
  • Carol Maguire, John Jay Middle School English and social studies
  • Sally Todd, John Jay Middle School art
  • Wendy Warnecke, Lewsiboro Elementary School general education

The retirements allow for the restoration of some of the 44 positions cut from the 2010-11 budget, said Carol Ann Lee, assistant superintendent of human resources.

The following staff have been reinstated this summer for the upcoming school year, either due to leave replacements, or retirements, according to Lee.

  • John Jay High School science teacher Yuko Ashida
  • John Jay High School Math math teacher Michelle Gaudio
  • John Jay Middle School math teacher Kathleen Beckley
  • Increase Miller Elementary School teacher Patricia Patwell
  • Lewisboro Elementary teacher Patricia Castellone
  • Lewisboro Elementary physical education teacher Marie Dondero
  • District-wide music teacher Amy Geiger
  • Lewisboro Elementary music teacher Melissa Pitz
  • Foreign language teacher Barbara Brailowsky, from the elementary program to John Jay Middle School
  • Elementary art teacher Amy Stockfield



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