By Wendy Gragg

Killeen Daily Herald

A massive addition of pre-Kindergarten classes and smaller class sizes in high school are driving the Killeen school board to consider the addition of more than 60 positions.

The school board will consider tonight the approval of revised staffing allocations, which would take the KISD employee count from 5,376 to 5,439 for the 2006-07 school year.

A change in the state's pre-kindergarten policy, opening the program to children of active-duty military, has the district expecting more than 600 pre-K students to show up on school doorsteps this fall.

The projected surge of students sent KISD personnel into a scramble for additional pre-K teachers. The board will consider the addition of 29 pre-K teachers to staff those additional classes.

Additional teachers also are being requested to accommodate the reduction in size of certain high school classes. School board trustees last school year set a goal of lowering the student:teacher ratio in foundation classes (English, math, science, social studies) to around 25 to 1. The board will consider hiring 23 additional high school teachers to move toward acheiving that goal. Another 16 positions are being proposed to operate academic labs at each high school. The labs are expected to be funded by money from House Bill 1 high-school funds.

To help pay for the increase in teachers in those areas, however, the special education department may see a smaller staff next year. District officials are proposing cutting 29 resource aides from special education, prompted by a redesign of the program last year.

The board will also continue its FY 2006-07 budget discussion at tonight's regular meeting and may approve its district beliefs and vision statement for the coming year as well.

The Killeen Independent School District board of trustees meets 6 p.m. today in the Board Room of the Administration Building at 200 North W.S. Young Drive.

Contact Wendy Gragg at

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