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The SafeSchools online staff training and compliance management system contains a comprehensive library of school-focused courses. SafeSchools Training includes safety courses relating to special education, technology, emergency management, and nutrition.

Reader Testimony: 

“SafeSchools online courses have been an invaluable tool for supplying our staff with quality training. The best part of the online courses is that they are professional and deliver the necessary information in a concise manner that is seen as valuable by all employees. There are no cheesy actors, but real people giving really good information.“

—Steve Quick, superintendent, Oroville School District, Wash.


A basic economic principle of supply and demand is taking hold in the Douglas County (Colo.) School District. The district is restructuring the pay scale for teachers and educators so the positions that are most in demand get paid more than those in lower demand.

The nation’s K12 school superintendents are increasingly fatigued and frustrated by pressures to accomplish more in their districts with less resources. For most, though, personal commitment to public education helps overcome sources of stress stemming from many aspects of their jobs.

I interviewed Jerry Weast last year soon after the announcement that he would be retiring as superintendent of the Montgomery County (Md.) School District. Over his 12 years as superintendent, he became renowned for his bold whole-district transformation, which included raising academic standards and narrowing the achievement gap for over 145,000 students in the 17th-largest school district in the nation. I also kept up with Joshua Starr, who from 2005 was the superintendent of Stamford (Conn.) Public Schools, a district that happens to lie next to our Norwalk office.


Misery Loves Company

Thank you, DA, for the recent salary survey article ("A Salary Recession for School Administrators," September 2010) based on the ERS's 37th national survey of salaries and wages in public schools. e article confirms the feedback we are receiving at AASA: The pain caused by the recession is being shared by all.

The drop in average salary increases for superintendents from the 2008-2009 school year to the 2009-2010 school year is noticeable and signals a trend that will undoubtedly continue into the 2010- 2011 school year.

In an impoverished corner of Phoenix, just north of Sky Harbor International Airport, the first school district in Arizona to adopt a 200-day calendar is reporting impressive academic improvements after only one year.

There are plenty of statistics available for measuring the performance, potential and problems of school districts, from standardized test scores to the number of students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.

If you didn't get the raise you were hoping for recently, you're certainly not alone. Almost every day, it seems, school districts coping with budget shortfalls are announcing freezes or cuts to administrative salaries and benefits as part of the solution, a trend that began during the past school year and is becoming more prevalent around the country.

With a national teacher shortage projected to start peaking this year as baby boomers retire and budget shortfalls restrict state and local funding for teachers, rural school districts are working to keep the teachers they have while seeking new ones at little if any additional cost.