Residents reject board inquiry to increase teaching staff in South River

Staff Writer

SOUTH RIVER – South River Public Schools will not be adding to their teaching staff due to the borough’s rejection of a tax levy ballot question, which requested to expand the school district’s teaching staff.

On the Nov. 8 ballot, South River proposed a permanent ballot question asking for $480,000 to employ 6.5 teaching staff members throughout the district for class size reduction and instructional program modifications, according to information provided by the New Jersey School Boards Association.

“The 6.5 is referring to the six-and-a-half teaching positions we were trying to add, which would have been a combination of full-time and part-time openings. We were asking for additional teaching staff to help address our particular instructional and student needs,” Superintendent Michael Pfister said.

South River’s question was rejected with 61 percent (2547) of the residents voting no and with 39 percent (1608) of the residents voting yes, according to election results posted on Middlesex County’s website.

“We are going through the prioritizing process and if the ballot would have passed, adding more teaching staff, it would have helped reduce the class sizes. In terms of expanding our instructional services, we have a growing bilingual population in our primary school. Hiring additional staff would have enhanced and increased our services we already provide,” Pfister said.

“The district’s goal is to support the school’s vision statement, which is to provide the best education for our students.”

Contact Vashti Harris