West Irondequoit CSD gets ready for busy school year with less staff

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WEST IRONDEQUOIT, N.Y. (WHEC) — With only days to go, the West Irondequoit Central School District is preparing for a busy year with a little less staff.

“Our primary area of shortages right now are our paraprofessional staff, so our teachers’ aides, teacher assistants and our monitors that provide extra support to students that help us out at lunchtime to interact with kids,” said Michelle Cramer, assistant superintendent of human resources for the West Irondequoit Central School District.

Not only are paraprofessionals in major need, but Cramer says they are also down cleaning staff and employees to help run security in the district.

‘We continue to problem solve where we’re moving staff around and helping out in different areas to make sure that the kids are getting the supports they need,” Cramer said.

The school official added that since West Irondequoit Central School District is smaller than some school districts, with an enrollment of approximately 3600 students, the problem is not as bad, and they are grateful for that.

“We’re not at a career fair level where we need support. We use our networking, word of mouth, and great communication from our team to get the positions out there,” Cramer said.

As the district rings in the new school year, she expects her staff will be wearing multiple hats for the foreseeable future.

“People will jump in. Teachers will cover an extra class when they need to, we’ll have teacher assistants will sometimes be in and cover classes when we have a shortage,” she said.

Unlike some of the school districts in Monroe County that are facing bus driver shortages, West Irondequoit Central School District does not have to deal with that issue, as the district does not run its own transportation. Instead, it is contracted out to a company called First Student.