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More kids at Westview, so more staff there too
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The Westview Elementary School building project will include the move of first-graders from Neal Wilkins Early Learning center and fourth-graders from Platteville Middle School.

As a result, several teachers and other Platteville Public Schools staff will be moving to Westview, and additional staff is likely to be hired for the larger school.

What PPS superintendent Connie Valenza described as a “very tentative” list of potential staffing changes begins with moving Neal Wilkins’ four first-grade teachers and PMS’ three fourth-grade teachers, as well as a PMS guidance counselor and a guidance intern, to Westview.

The early proposal also includes adding a special education teacher, a full-time administrative assistant, a food service cashier, two part-time housekeepers, and a physical education intern at Westview. It also includes increasing an 80-percent art position to full-time.

Independent of the Westview changes, Valenza projects increasing the school psychologist position back to full-time, and adding a section of sixth grade. The changes would add about $326,000 to the 2016–17 school district budget, though that amount may be offset by changes in the school district’s other buildings.

Other changes affecting the 2016–17 budget would be about $40,000 in extra salaries by teachers moving up the salary schedule, before any pay increases.

Valenza introduced the changes “sooner rather than later to understand the implications for us moving forward.”

One of the people who will not be at Westview next year is its principal. Lisa Finnegan will be retiring from the school district at the end of the school year after 33 years, starting as a special education teacher and serving as Platteville High School assistant principal twice, and PMS and Westview principal, as well as being the school district’s assessment coordinator.

Finnegan moved to Westview this school year after the retirement of principal Don Shaw.