USC announces new principal for Boyce Middle School

Published May 14, 2013 at 9:08 am (Updated May 14, 2013 at 9:08 am)

Upper St. Clair School Board on May 13 promoted an assistant principal to replace Boyce Middle School Principal Karen Brown when she retires at the end of this school year.

Amy G. Pfender has been promoted to principal of the school, effective July 1, at a salary of $89,000.

Pfender has been an Assistant Principal serving jointly at Boyce and Fort Couch Middle Schools, covering grades five through eight, since March 2012.

She came to Upper St. Clair School District from Peters Township School District in 2005, as a Learning Support Teacher for grades five and six. In 2010, she was promoted to Special Education Curriculum Leader for grades kindergarten through six.

Sharon Suritsky, assistant superintendent, said “She’s a young leader but we are very, very confident about her future at Boyce Middle School.”

Pfender received her bachelor’s degree in 2000 from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, where she was a triple major in elementary, early childhood and special education. She received her master’s of education degree in administrative policy studies and school leadership from the University of Pittsburgh in 2005.

Pfender has certifications in middle level English and math as well as a curriculum/instruction supervisor certification, a principal’s certification and a special education supervisor certification.

In other business on May 13, the board heard an updated budget report from Frosina Cordisco, director of business and finance.

Cordsco reported that she is currently lowering slightly her proposed millage rate for the 2013-14 budget, from the 21.438 mill rate adopted on April 22 as part of the proposed final budget for the district down to a rate of 21.413.

She said this rate, if adopted on May 28 when the school board is expected to vote on a final budget, would be 16.7 percent lower than the 25.718 millage rate for 2012-13. She said this matches the millage rate reduction announced by Upper St. Clair Township earlier this year.

The township and school district are required by state law to lower their tax rates as a result of a county real estate reassessment that takes effect this year. School districts are prohibited from gaining a so-called windfall in revenues solely as a result of increased property values, whereas municipalities are permitted a five percent increase in revenues.

Cordisco told the board May 13 that there are still about $38 million worth of unresolved reassessment appeals in the township. The district must project what percent of those appeals the district will receive in the end.

The district is not required by the state to adopt a budget until June 30, but district Superintendent Patrick O’Toole has said that passing a budget the end of June as the board normally does makes it hard for the administration to arrange staffing given retirements and any potential staff cuts called for in the budget.

Cordisco said budget number may change again before the expected final vote on May 28 due to the fact that the district may receive about $400,000 less than budgeted from the federal government for the 2012-13 budget year.

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