Juniata County School District

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Juniata County School District
Map of Juniata County Pennsylvania School Districts.png
Address
75 South Seventh Street
Mifflintown, Pennsylvania, Juniata County 17059
United States
Information
Type Public
School board 9 elected members
Superintendent

Mr Keith D Yarger, Salary $110,000 (2014) (contract August 2014 to August 24, 2017)[1][2]
Former Superintendent Richard Musselman (hired July 2011) contract through June 2014

Former Superintendent Kenneth Albaugh salary $114,000 2011, May 17, 2007 - February 2011[3][4]
School number (717) 436-2111
Principal Nancy Kramer, Monroe ES, Thompsontown ES, Fayette ES,
Principal Christie Holderman, Fermanagh ES, Walker ES
Principal Valerie Ricedorf, Mountain View ES, Lack-Tuscarora ES, Tuscarora Valley ES
Principal Aaron Bennett, Tuscarora JHS
Principal Edward Apple, Juniata HS
Staff 107 non teaching staff (2013), 268 non teaching staff
Faculty 196 teachers (2013),[5] 218 teachers (2010)
Grades K-12
Age 5 years old to 21 years old for special ed students
Pupils

2,963 pupils (2013-14)[6]
3,092 pupils (2009-10) [7]
3,186 pupils (2007-08)[8]

3,125 pupils (2005-06)
 • Kindergarten 195 (2012), 224 (2010)
 • Grade 1 194 (2012), 228
 • Grade 2 229 (2012), 270
 • Grade 3 234 (2012), 227
 • Grade 4 224 (2012), 226
 • Grade 5 268 (2012), 242
 • Grade 6 217 (2012), 230
 • Grade 7 232 (2012), 208
 • Grade 8 255 (2012), 225
 • Grade 9 229 (2012), 258
 • Grade 10 228 (2012), 262
 • Grade 11 228 (2012), 246
 • Grade 12 230 (2012), 226 (2010)
 • Other Enrollment projected to decline to 2,900 pupils in 2019[9]
Language English
Budget

$34,247,565 (2015-16)[10]
$33,195,026 (2014-15) preliminary[11]
$32,041,445 (2013-14)[12]
$31,420,526 (2012-13)[13]

$33 million (2011-12)[14]
Per pupil spending $9,092 (2008)
Per pupil spending $9,991.56 (2010)
Website

The Juniata County School District is a rural, public school district located in Juniata County, Pennsylvania. The District is one of the 500 public school districts of Pennsylvania and one of seven county-wide school districts in the Commonwealth. The District encompasses approximately 372 square miles (960 km2). Juniata County School District serves residents in: Beale Township, Delaware Township, Fayette Township, Fermanagh Township, Lack Township, Milford Township, Monroe Township, Spruce Hill Township, Susquehanna Township, Turbett Township, Tuscarora Township and Walker Township. It also serves the residents of the following boroughs: Mifflin, Mifflintown, Port Royal, Thompsontown, East Salem, East Waterford, Mexico, McAlisterville and Richfield. According to 2000 federal census data, Juniata County School District served a resident population of 22,273 people. By 2013, the US Census reports that the Juniata County School District's resident population grew to 24,005 people.[15] The educational attainment levels for the Juniata County School District population (25 years old and over) were 82.4% high school graduates and 11.2% college graduates.[16] The District is one of the 500 public school districts of Pennsylvania.

According to the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, 40.6% of the District’s pupils lived at 185% or below the Federal Poverty Level [1] as shown by their eligibility for the federal free or reduced price school meal programs in 2012.[17] In 2009, the district residents’ per capita income was $16,112, while the median family income was $39,736.[18] In the Commonwealth, the median family income was $49,501 [19] and the United States median family income was $49,445, in 2010.[20] By 2013, the median household income in the United States rose to $52,100.[21] The educational attainment levels for the population 25 and over were 82.4% high school graduates and 11.2% college graduates.[22]

Per school district officials, in school year 2007-08, Juniata County School District provided basic educational services to 3,189 pupils. It employed: 231 teachers, 155 full-time and part-time support personnel, and 18 administrators. In 2019-2010, the District provided basic educational services to 3,079 pupils. Juniata County School District employed: 234 teachers, 156 full- time and part-time support personnel, and 18 administrators. Juniata County School District received $15 million in state funding in the 2009-2010 school year.

Juniata county School District operates two high schools: Juniata High School and East Juniata Junior/Senior High School. Juniata County high school students may choose to attend Mifflin-Juniata Career and Technology Center for training in the construction and mechanical trades. The District also operates one middle school - Tuscarora Junior High School and eight elementary schools (see list below). The Tuscarora Intermediate Unit IU11 provides the District with a wide variety of services like specialized education for disabled students and hearing, speech and visual disability services, employee background checks and professional development for staff and faculty.

Governance[edit]

Juniata County School District is governed by 9 individually elected board members (serve without compensation for a term of four years), the Pennsylvania State Board of Education, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Pennsylvania General Assembly.[23] The federal government controls programs it funds like: Title I funding for low income children in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the No Child Left Behind Act, which mandates the district focus resources on student success in acquiring reading and math skills. The Superintendent and Business Manager are appointed by the school board. The Superintendent is the chief administrative officer with overall responsibility for all aspects of operations, including education and finance. The Business Manager is responsible for budget and financial operations. Neither of these officials are voting members of the School Board. The School Board enters into individual employment contracts for these positions. In Pennsylvania, public school districts are required to give 150 days notice to the Superintendent regarding renewal of the employment contract.[24]

Elementary schools[edit]

School Name Location (Municipality) Street Address Principal Enrollment 2010/Teacher 2013 Performance Score
Fayette Elementary School Fayette Township 145 School Street
McAlisterville, PA 17049
Mr.Andy Kinzer 250/17
253 pupils (2013)
79.9 out of 100[25]
Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary Fermanagh Township 75 So. Seventh Street
Mifflintown, PA 17059
Ms. Christie Holderman 230/17
250 pupils (2013)
68.1[26]
Lack-Tuscarora Elementary Tuscarora Township 3044 Middle Road
Honey Grove, PA 17035
Mrs. Valerie Ricedorf 134/7
124 pupils (2013)
60.6 [27]
Monroe Elementary Monroe Township 54 Main Street
Richfield, PA 17086
Mr. Andy Kinzer 192/15
208 pupils (2013)
84.7 [28]
Mountain View Elementary Milford Township 23215 Route 35 South
Mifflin, PA 17058
Mrs. Valerie Ricedorf 236/17
209 pupils (2013)
63.3 [29]
Thompsontown-Delaware Elementary Delaware Township 21 School Street
Thompsontown, PA 17094
Mr. Andy Kinzer 135/10
121 pupils (2013)
81.1[30]
Tuscarora Valley Elementary Milford Township 401 Eighth Street
Port Royal, PA 17082
Mrs. Valerie Ricedorf 144/12
136 pupils (2013)
74.4 [31]
Walker Township Elementary Walker Township 7864 William Penn Hwy
Mifflintown, PA 17059
Ms. Christie Holderman 119/10
122 pupils (2013)
79.5 [32]

In August 2011, the board closed the Susquehanna Elementary School due to an enrollment of 50 pupils. Students have been assigned to attend Monroe Elementary School.[33]

Academic achievement[edit]

The Juniata County School District was ranked 383rd out of 498 Pennsylvania school districts by the Pittsburgh Business Times in 2015.[34] The ranking was based on student academic achievement as demonstrated on the last three years of the PSSAs for: reading, writing, math and science and the three Keystone Exams (literature, Algebra 1, Biology I) in high school.[35] The PSSAs are given to all children in grades 3rd through 8th and the 11th grade in high school.[36] Three school districts were excluded because they do not operate high schools (Saint Clair Area School District, Midland Borough School District, Duquesne City School District). The PSSAs are given to all children in grades 3rd through 8th. Adapted examinations are given to children in the special education programs. Writing exams were given to children in 5th, 8th and 11th grades.

Overachiever statewide ranking

In 2013, the Pittsburgh Business Times also reported an Overachievers Ranking for 498 Pennsylvania school districts. Juniata County School District ranked 353rd. In 2012, the District was ranked 338th. [43] The editor describes the ranking as: "a ranking answers the question - which school districts do better than expectations based upon economics? This rank takes the Honor Roll rank and adds the percentage of students in the district eligible for free and reduced-price lunch into the formula. A district finishing high on this rank is smashing expectations, and any district above the median point is exceeding expectations."[44]

In 2009, the academic achievement of the students in the Juniata County School District was in the 26th percentile among Pennsylvania's 500 school districts. Scale (0-99; 100 is state best) [45]

Opportunity Scholarship - lowest achieving schools

In May 2015, the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) released a report identifying two Juniata County School District schools as among the lowest achieving schools for reading and mathematics in the state. Both Lack-Tusarora Elementary School and Tuscarora Valley Elementary School were on the 2015 list.[46] One hundred four (104) public school districts had one or more schools on the list.

In October 2015, Pennsylvania Auditor General DiPasquale reported that five schools in the Juniata County School District are among the 561 academically challenged schools that have been overlooked by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. On the list were: Lack-Tusarora Elementary School, Tuscarora Valley Elementary School, Tuscarora Middle School, Juniata Senior High School and East Juniata Junior Senior High School.[47][48] He also reported the Pennsylvania Department of Education failed to take any action to remediate the poorly performing schools to raise student academic achievement or to provide them with targeted professional assistance.[49]

In 2012, 2013 and 2014, Juniata Senior High School was on the low achievement list.[50][51][52] In 2011-12, Tuscarora Valley Elementary School was listed as among the lowest achieving schools in the Commonwealth.[53]

Parents and students may be eligible for scholarships to transfer to another public or nonpublic school through the state's Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit Program passed in June 2012.[54] The scholarships are limited to those students whose family's income is less than $60,000 annually, with another $12,000 allowed per dependent. Maximum scholarship award is $8,500, with special education students receiving up to $15,000 for a year's tuition. Parents pay any difference between the scholarship amount and the receiving school's tuition rate. Students may seek admission to a neighboring public school district. Each year the PDE publishes the tuition rate for each individual public school district.[55] According to the report, parents in 414 public schools (74 school districts) were offered access to these scholarships. For the 2012-13 school year, nine public school districts in Pennsylvania had all of their schools placed on the list including: Steelton-Highspire School District, Sto-Rox School District, Chester Upland School District, Clairton City School District, Duquesne City School District, Farrell Area School District, Wilkinsburg Borough School District, and William Penn School District.[56] In 2014, Monessen City School District had all three of its schools added to the list. Funding for the scholarships comes from donations by businesses which receive a state tax credit for donating.

Graduation rate[edit]

In 2012, the Juniata County School District graduation rate was 89%.[57] In 2011, the District's graduation rate was 94%.[58] In 2010, the Pennsylvania Department of Education issued a new, 4-year cohort graduation rate. Juniata County School District's rate was 93% for 2010.[59]

According to traditional graduation rate calculations
College remediation

According to a Pennsylvania Department of Education study released in January 2009, 27% of Juniata County School District graduates required remediation in mathematics and or reading before they were prepared to take college level courses in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education or community colleges.[64][65] Less than 66% of Pennsylvania high school graduates, who enroll in a four-year college in Pennsylvania, will earn a bachelor's degree within six years. Among Pennsylvania high school graduates pursuing an associate degree, only one in three graduate in three years.[66] Per the Pennsylvania Department of Education, one in three recent high school graduates who attend Pennsylvania's public universities and community colleges takes at least one remedial course in math, reading or English.

Juniata High School[edit]

Juniata High School is located at Old Route 22 East, Mifflintown. In 2014, enrollment was reported as 524 pupils in 9th through 12th grades, with 36.9% of pupils eligible for a free lunch due to family poverty. Additionally, 10.5% of pupils received special education services, while 3% of pupils were identified as gifted.[67] The school employed 34 teachers.[68] Per the PA Department of Education, 1% of the teachers were rated "Non‐Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.

2014 School Performance Profile

Juniata High School achieved 67.6 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, mathematics and science achievement. In reading/literature - 81% were on grade level. In Algebra 1, 57% showed on grade level skills at the end of the course. In Biology, only 50% demonstrated on grade level science understanding at the end of the course.[69] The Graduation rate was 85.5%. Statewide, the percentage of high school students who scored proficient and advanced in Algebra I increased to 39.7% to 40.1%. The percentage of high school students who scored proficient and advanced in reading/literature declined to 52.5%. The percentage of high school students who scored proficient and advanced in biology improved from 39.7% to 41.4%.[70]

2013 School Performance Profile

Juniata High School achieved 70.5 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, mathematics and science achievement. In reading/literature - 70% were on grade level. In Algebra 1, 63% showed on grade level skills. In Biology, 37% showed on grade level science understanding.[71] According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 2,181 public schools (less than 73 percent of Pennsylvania public schools), achieved an academic score of 70 or higher. Pennsylvania 11th grade students no longer take the PSSAs. Instead, they now take the Keystone Exams at the end of the associated course.

AYP History

In 2012, Juniata High School declined further to School Improvement I status due to missing 6 out of 6 academics metrics in reading and math, coupled a declining graduation rate.[72] Juniata High School administration was required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, to develop a School Improvement Plan to address the school's low student achievement. Under the Pennsylvania Accountability System, the school district must pay for additional tutoring for struggling students.[73] The High School is eligible for special, extra funding under School Improvement Grants which the school must apply for each year.[74]

  • 2011 - Warning level AYP status.[75]
  • 2010 - Warning level AYP status due to chronically, low student achievement.[76]
  • 2009 - achieved Adequate Yearly Progress status[77]
PSSA Results:

Pennsylvania System of School Assessments, commonly called PSSAs are No Child Left Behind Act related examinations which were administered from 2003 through 2012, in all Pennsylvania public high schools. The exams were administered in the Spring of each school year. The goal was for 100% of students to be on grade level or better in reading and mathematics, by the Spring of 2014. The tests focused on the state's Academic Standards for reading, writing, mathematics and science. The Science exam included content in science, technology, ecology and the environmental studies. The mathematics exam included: algebra I, algebra II, geometry and trigonometry. The standards were first published in 1998 and are mandated by the Pennsylvania State Board of Education.[78]

In 2013, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania changed its high school assessments to the Keystone Exams in Algebra 1, Reading/literature and Biology1. The exams are given at the end of the course, rather than all in the spring of the student's 11th grade year.[79]

11th Grade Reading:
  • 2012 - 58% on grade level, (19% below basic). State - 67% of 11th graders are on grade level.[80]
  • 2011 - 64% (14% below basic). State - 69.1% [81]
  • 2010 - 66% (25% below basic). State - 66% [82]
  • 2009 - 72% (19% below basic), State - 65%[83]
  • 2008 - 57% (20% below basic), State - 65%[84]
  • 2007 - 62% (14% below basic), State - 65%[85]
11th Grade Math:
  • 2012 - 48% on grade level (30% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 59% of 11th graders are on grade level.[86]
  • 2011 - 61%, (23% below basic). State - 60.3%
  • 2010 - 48% (35% below basic). State - 59% [87]
  • 2009 - 52% (23% below basic), State - 56% [88]
  • 2008 - 40% (33% below basic), State - 56%
  • 2007 - 42% (33% below basic), State - 53%
11th Grade Science:
  • 2012 - 25% on grade level (26% below basic). State - 42% of 11th graders were on grade level.[89]
  • 2011 - 31% (18% below basic). State - 40%[90]
  • 2010 - 37% (17% below basic). State - 39%
  • 2009 - 34% (18% below basic). State - 40%
  • 2008 - 27% (17% below basic). State - 39% [91]

SAT scores[edit]

In 2014, 52 Juniata Senior High School students took the SAT exams. The District's Verbal Average Score was 509. The Math average score was 505. The Writing average score was 483.[92][93] Statewide in Pennsylvania, Verbal Average Score was 497. The Math average score was 504. The Writing average score was 480. The College Board also reported that nationwide scores were: 497 in reading, 513 in math and 487 in writing.[94] In 2014, 1,672,395 students took the SATs in the United States.

In 2013, Juniata High School students took the SAT exams. The District's Verbal Average Score was 490. The Math average score was 471. The Writing average score was 474. The College Board reported that statewide scores were: 494 in reading, 504 in math and 482 in writing. The nationwide SAT results were the same as in 2012.[95]

In 2012, Juniata High School students took the SAT exams. The District's Verbal Average Score was 484. The Math average score was 487. The Writing average score was 478. The statewide Verbal SAT exams results were: Verbal 491, Math 501, Writing 480. In the USA, 1.65 million students took the exams achieving scores: Verbal 496, Math 514, Writing 488. According to the College Board the maximum score on each section was 800, and 360 students nationwide scored a perfect 2,400.

In 2011, 67 Juniata High School students took the SAT exams. The school's Verbal Average Score was 508. The Math average score was 493. The Writing average score was 487.[96] Pennsylvania ranked 40th among state with SAT scores: Verbal - 493, Math - 501, Writing - 479.[97] In the United States 1.65 million students took the exam in 2011. They averaged 497 (out of 800) verbal, 514 math and 489 in writing.[98]

East Juniata Junior Senior High School[edit]

East Juniata Junior Senior High School is located at Route 35 Cocolamus, McAlisterville. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2013, the school reported an enrollment of 555 pupils in grades 7th through 12th, with 35% of its pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch due to the family meeting the federal poverty level. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of its teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under No Child Left Behind.[99]

In 2011, East Juniata Junior Senior High School had 547 pupils in grades 7th through 12th with 168 pupils eligible for a free or reduced price lunch. The school employed 35.5 teachers yielding a student-teacher ratio of 15:1.[100] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 2 teachers were rated "Non‐Highly Qualified" under No Child Left Behind.[101]

2015 School Performance Profile

The PDE reported that 46% of 8th grade students at East Juniata Junior Senior High School students were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In math/Algebra 1, only 20% of 8th grade students showed on grade level skills. In science, 72% of the school’s 8th graders demonstrated on grade level science understanding. No eighth grade writing scores were reported. In 7th grade, 47% were on grade level in reading, while 29% showed on grade level math skills.[102] Statewide 58% of eighth (8th) graders were on grade level in reading, while 29% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Pennsylvania 7th graders were 58% on grade level in reading and 33% demonstrated on grade level math skills.[103]

2014 School Performance Profile

East Juniata Junior Senior High School achieved 58.2 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, mathematics and science achievement. In reading/literature - just 61% were on grade level. In Algebra 1, 61% showed on grade level skills at the end of the course. In Biology, only 47% demonstrated on grade level science understanding at the end of the course. The graduation rate was 93%. In writing, 73% of eighth graders demonstrated on grade level skills.[104]

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 2,134 of 2,947 Pennsylvania public schools (72 percent of Pennsylvania public schools), achieved an academic score of 70 or higher.[105] Fifty-three percent of schools statewide received lower SPP scores compared with last year's, while 46 percent improved. A handful were unchanged.[106][107]

Compared with 2013, the percentage of schools that earned below 60 declined by nearly 1 percent per Secretary of Education Carolyn Dumaresq. She reported that this is an indication that student achievement is improving as school resources are being used better.[108]

2013 School Performance Profile

East Juniata Junior Senior High School achieved 70.4 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, mathematics and science achievement. In reading/literature - 71.79% were on grade level. In Algebra 1, 66% showed on grade level skills. In Biology, 52% showed on grade level science understanding.[109]

AYP status history

In 2012, East Juniata Junior Senior High School declined to Warning Adequate Yearly Progress status.[110] In 2011 and 2010, the school achieved AYP status.[111] The graduation rate was 95% in 2011 and 96% in 2010.[112] East Juniata Junior Senior High School achieved AYP status in both 2009 and 2010.[113]

PSSA Results:
11th Grade Reading
  • 2012 - 67% on grade level, (16% below basic). State - 67% [114]
  • 2011 - 62% (17% below basic). State - 69.1%[115]
  • 2010 - 52%, (30% below basic). State - 66% [116]
  • 2009 - 69% (19% below basic). State - 65%[117]
  • 2008 - 66% (14% below basic). State - 65%[118]
  • 2007 - 64% (17% below basic). State - 65%
11th Grade Math:
  • 2012 - 55% on grade level (22% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 59% of 11th graders are on grade level.[119]
  • 2011 - 55%, (24% below basic). State - 60.3%
  • 2010 - 53%, (21% below basic). State - 59%[120]
  • 2009 - 52% (22% below basic). State - 56%
  • 2008 - 64% (23% below basic). State - 56%
  • 2007 - 39% (36% below basic). State - 53%
11th Grade Science:
  • 2012 - 48% on grade level (11% below basic). State - 42% of 11th graders were on grade level.
  • 2011 - 28% (28% below basic). State - 40% [121]
  • 2010 - 26% (19% below basic). State - 39%
  • 2009 - 35% (15% below basic). State - 40%
  • 2008 - 43% (44% below basic). State - 39% [122]

8th Grade Science:

  • 2012 - 59% on grade level (19% below basic). State - 59%
  • 2011 - 54% (13% below basic). State – 58.3%
  • 2010 - 64% (25% below basic). State - 57%
  • 2009 - 69% (14% below basic). State - 55%
  • 2008 - 61% (13% below basic), State - 50%

SAT scores[edit]

In 2014, 38 East Juniata Junior Senior High School students took the SAT exams. The District's Verbal Average Score was 508. The Math average score was 502. The Writing average score was 491.[124][125]

In 2013, East Juniata Junior Senior High School students took the SAT exams. The District's Verbal Average Score was 540. The Math average score was 551. The Writing average score was 507.

In 2012, 41 East Juniata Junior Senior High School students took the SAT exams. The District's Verbal Average Score was 498. The Math average score was 511. The Writing average score was 473.

In 2011, 34 East Juniata Junior Senior High School students took the SAT exams. The school's Verbal Average Score was 477. The Math average score was 508. The Writing average score was 487.[126] Pennsylvania ranked 40th among state with SAT scores: Verbal - 493, Math - 501, Writing - 479.[127] In the United States 1.65 million students took the exam in 2011. They averaged 497 (out of 800) verbal, 514 math and 489 in writing.[128]

AP Courses[edit]

In 2013, East Juniata Junior Senior High School offered 3 Advanced Placement (AP) courses at a higher cost than regular courses. At East Juniata Junior Senior High School 45% of students who took an AP course earned a 3 or better on the exam.[129]

In 2014, East Juniata Junior Senior High School again offered 3 AP courses. Fewer than 10 of the pupils, who took an AP course, earned a 3 or better on the exam.[130]

Tuscarora Middle School[edit]

Tuscarora Middle School is a small rural public school located at Old Route 22 East, Mifflintown. In 2013, the Tuscarora Middle School had an enrollment of 422 pupils in grade 6th through 8th, with 43% coming from a home with low income. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, several teachers were rated "Non‐Highly Qualified" under the No Child Left Behind Act.[131]

According to the Center for Education Statistics, in 2011, Tuscarora Middle School reported an enrollment of 428 pupils in grades 6th through 8th, with 198 pupils receiving a federal free or reduced price lunch due to family poverty. The school employed 31.7 teachers yielding a student-teacher ratio of 13:1.[132] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), the majority of teachers were rated "Non‐Highly Qualified" under No Child Left Behind Act.[133]

2015 School Performance Profile

The PDE reported that 53% of 8th grade students at Tuscarora Middle School students were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In math/Algebra 1, just 15% of 8th grade students showed on grade level skills. In science, 52% of the school’s 8th graders demonstrated on grade level science understanding. No eighth grade writing scores were reported. In 7th grade, 40% were on grade level in reading, while 23% showed on grade level math skills. Among 6th graders, 26% were on grade level in reading and 30% were on grade level in mathematics.[134] Statewide 58% of eighth (8th) graders were on grade level in reading, while 29% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Pennsylvania 7th graders were 58% on grade level in reading and 33% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Among sixth (6th) graders, 60.7% were reading on grade level, while 39.7% demonstrated on grade level math skills.[135]

2014 School Performance Profile

Tuscarora Middle School achieved 69.7 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, mathematics and science achievement. In reading/literature - 66% of the School's students were on grade level. In Algebra 1/Math, 69.9% showed on grade level mathematics skills. In Science, 50% of 8th graders showed on grade level science understanding. In writing, 80% of the 8th grade students demonstrated on grade level writing skills.[136]

2013 School Performance Profile

Tuscarora Middle School achieved 61.7 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, writing, mathematics and science achievement. In reading, 63% of the students were on grade level. In Mathematics, 69% of the students showed on grade level skills. In Science, 56% of the 8th graders demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, 54% of the 8th grade students demonstrated on grade level writing skills.[137]

AYP History

In 2012, Tuscarora Middle School declined to Corrective Action Level I status due to chronic, low student achievement in reading and math.[138]

  • 2011 - declined to School Improvement II status due to low student achievement in reading and math.[139]
  • 2010 - Making Progress: in School Improvement I due to chronic low student achievement.[140]
  • 2009 - School Improvement I due to low student achievement.[141]
8th Grade Reading:
  • 2012 - 66% on grade level (19% below basic). In Pennsylvania, 79% of 8th graders on grade level.[142]
  • 2011 - 81% (10% below basic). State - 81.8% [143]
  • 2010 - 74% (12% below basic). State - 81% [144]
  • 2009 - 69% (18% below basic), State - 80%[145]
  • 2008 - 77% (10% below basic), State - 78%
8th Grade Math:
  • 2012 - 68% on grade level (11% below basic). State - 76% [146]
  • 2011 - 85% (3% below basic). State - 76.9%
  • 2010 - 73% (8% below basic). State -75%
  • 2009 - 61% (18% below basic). State - 71%
  • 2008 - 65% (16% below basic). State - 70%

8th Grade Science:

  • 2012 - 45% on grade level (34% below basic). State - 59%
  • 2011 - 52% (20% below basic). State – 58.3%
  • 2010 - 51% (28% below basic), State - 57%
  • 2009 - 41% (33% below basic), State - 55%
  • 2008 - 54% (19% below basic), State - 50%

Fayette Township Elementary School[edit]

Fayette Township Elementary School is a small rural school located in the borough of McAlisterville. In 2013, the Fayette Township Elementary School's enrollment was 253 pupils in grades kindergarten through 6th, with 40% of pupils receiving a federal free or reduced price meals due to family poverty. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the teachers were rated highly qualified under the federal No Child Left Behind Act. The School provides full day kindergarten.[147] Fayette Township Elementary School is a federal Title I school.

In 2011, Fayette Township Elementary School's enrollment was 265 pupils with 103 pupils receiving a federal free or reduced price meals due to family poverty. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the teachers were rated highly qualified under No Child Left Behind. The school provided half day kindergarten.[148] The student:teacher ratio was 14:1.

2015 School Performance Profile

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, among Fayette Township Elementary School 6th graders, 64% were on grade level in reading and 46% were on grade level in mathematics. For fifth graders, 56% of students at were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In mathematics, 41% of 5th grade students showed on grade level skills. No fifth grade writing scores were reported. In 4th grade, 74% were on grade level in reading, while 55% showed on grade level math skills. In science, 89% of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Among third (3rd) graders, 74% were on grade level in reading and 74% were on grade level in mathematics.[149] Statewide 61.9% of fifth (5th) graders were on grade level in reading, while 42.8% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Pennsylvania 4th graders were 58.6% on grade level in reading and 44.4% demonstrated on grade level math skills. In science, 77.3% of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Among Pennsylvania third (3rd) graders, 62% were reading on grade level, while 48.5% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Among sixth (6th) graders, 60.7% were reading on grade level, while 39.7% demonstrated on grade level math skills.[150]

2014 School Performance Profile

Fayette Township Elementary School achieved a score of 77.3 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2013-14, only 68.8% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th. In 3rd grade, 78.9% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 86% were on grade level (3rd-6th grades). In 4th grade science, just 88% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only 70% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[151]

2013 School Performance Profile

Fayette Township Elementary School achieved a score of 79.9 of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2012-13, only 71% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th. In 3rd grade, 82.9% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 81% were on grade level (3rd-6th grades). In 4th grade science, 94% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing only 68% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level writing skills.[152]

AYP history

In 2003 through 2012, Fayette Township Elementary School achieved AYP status each school year.[153]

In 2012, only 70% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th, with 18% below basic. In math, 84% of the students in 3rd through 6th grades were on grade level and 56% scored advanced. In 4th grade science, 100% of the pupils were on grade level.[154]

Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School[edit]

Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School is a small, rural public school located in Mifflintown. In 2013, the Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School's enrollment was 250 pupils (K-5th with 46% of pupils receiving a federal free or reduced price meals due to family poverty. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the teachers were rated highly qualified under No Child Left Behind. Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School provides full day kindergarten.[155]

Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School is a federally designated Title I school. In 2011, the school had 237 pupils (K-5) and employed 17 teachers yielding a student-teacher ratio of 13:1.[156] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of its teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[157]

2015 School Performance Profile

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 51% of 5th grade students at Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In mathematics, 52% of 5th grade students showed on grade level math skills. No fifth grade writing scores were reported. In 4th grade, 47% were on grade level in reading, while 28% showed on grade level math skills. In science, 68% of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Among third (3rd) graders, 59% were on grade level in reading and 40% were on grade level in mathematics.[158][159]

2014 School Performance Profile

Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School achieved a score of 71.4 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2013-14, only 60% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th. In 3rd grade, 66.6% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 72% were on grade level (3rd-6th grades). In 4th grade science, just 73% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only 23% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[160]

2013 School Performance Profile

Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School achieved a score of 68.1 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2012-13, only 54% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 5th. In 3rd grade, just 58% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 64% were on grade level (3rd-5th grades). In 4th grade science, just 66.6% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only just 38% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level writing skills.[161]

AYP History

In 2012, Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School declined to School Improvement Level I AYP status, due to low student achievement in both reading and mathematics.[162] In 2011, Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School declined to Warning AYP status due to lagging student achievement. From 2003 to 2010, Fermanagh-Mifflintown Elementary School achieved Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) status each school year.

PSSA results
4th Grade Science
  • 2012 - 90%, (5% below basic). State - 82%
  • 2011 - 95%, (2% below basic). State - 82.9%
  • 2010 - 93%, (0% below basic). State - 81%

Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School[edit]

Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School is located at. In 2014, the School's enrollment was 130 pupils in grades kindergarten through 5th, with 56.7 of pupils receiving a federal free or reduced price meals due to family poverty. Additionally, 20% of the pupils receive special education services, while none are identified as gifted.[167] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the teachers were rated highly qualified under No Child Left Behind. The school provides full day kindergarten.[168] The school is a federally designated Title I school.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2012, enrollment was 130 pupils in grades kindergarten through 5th, with 74 pupils receiving a free or reduced price lunch. The School employed 10 teachers yielding a student-teacher ratio of 13:1.[169] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of its teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[170] The school provided full day kindergarten to all its pupils since 2004.[171]

2015 School Performance Profile

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 30% of 5th grade students at Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In mathematics, 35% of 5th grade students showed on grade level skills. No fifth grade writing scores were reported. In 4th grade, 22% were on grade level in reading, while 16% showed on grade level math skills. In science, 44% of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Among third (3rd) graders, 44% were on grade level in reading and 33% were on grade level in mathematics.[172]

2014 School Performance Profile

Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School achieved a score of 59.4 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2013-14, only 36.9% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 5th. In 3rd grade, % of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 50.7% were on grade level (3rd-5th grades). In 4th grade science, just 52% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only 16.6% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[173]

2013 School Performance Profile

Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School achieved a score of 60.6 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2012-13, only 38% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 5th. In 3rd grade, 42% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 63% were on grade level (3rd-5th grades). In 4th grade science, just 73% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only 42% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[174]

AYP status history

In 2012, Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School declined to Warning AYP status, due to lagging math achievement.[175] In 2009 through 2011, Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School achieved AYP status each year. In 2008, the school declined to Warning AYP status due to lagging academic achievement.

Juniata County School District has provided full-day kindergarten for more than a decade.[176] and preschool.[177] Proponents of full day kindergarten claim it will reduce special education numbers and it will raise primary student academic achievement especially in reading and math.[178] Those outcomes have not been realized in the Juniata County School District. Reading achievement in particular has not substantially improved.[179]

4th Grade Science
  • 2012 - 93%, (7% below basic). State - 82%
  • 2011 - 92%, (0% below basic). State - 82.9%
  • 2010 - 100% on grade level. State - 81%

Monroe Township Elementary School[edit]

Monroe Township Elementary School is located at Route 35 South, Richfield. In 2014, the School's enrollment was 214 pupils in grades kindergarten through 6th, with 48% of pupils receiving a federal free or reduced price meals due to family poverty. Additionally, 13% of the pupils receive special education services, while none are identified as gifted.[183] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the teachers were rated highly qualified under No Child Left Behind. The school provides full day kindergarten.[184] The school is a federally designated Title I school.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2012, enrollment was 214 pupils in grades kindergarten through 6th, with 103 pupils receiving a free or reduced price lunch. The School employed 13 teachers yielding a student-teacher ratio of 16:1.[185] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of its teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[186] The Monroe Township Elementary School provided full day kindergarten to all its pupils since 2004.[187]

2015 School Performance Profile

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 50% of 5th grade students were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In mathematics, 41% of 5th grade students showed on grade level skills. No fifth grade writing scores were reported. In 4th grade, 42% were on grade level in reading, while 42% showed on grade level math skills. In science, % of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Among third (3rd) graders, 58% were on grade level in reading and 54% were on grade level in mathematics. Among 6th graders, 77% were on grade level in reading and 63% were on grade level in mathematics.[188]

2014 School Performance Profile

Monroe Township Elementary School achieved a score of 82.9 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2013-14, only 65% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th. In 3rd grade, only 66% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 80% were on grade level (3rd-6th grades). In 4th grade science, 91% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only 68% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[189]

2013 School Performance Profile

Monroe Township Elementary School achieved a score of 84.7 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2012-13, only 70% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th. In 3rd grade, 68% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 81.9% were on grade level (3rd-6th grades). In 4th grade science, just 95.8% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing, only 57.8% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[190]

AYP status history

From 2003 through 2012, Monroe Township Elementary School achieved Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) status each school year.[191] In 2012, only 71% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 6th. In math, 84% of the students in 3rd through 6th grades were on grade level and 57% scored advanced. In 4th grade science, 90% of the pupils were on grade level.[192]

Special education[edit]

In December 2013, Juniata County School District administration reported that 379 pupils or 12.8% of the district's pupils received Special Education services, with 42.2% of the identified students having a specific learning disability.[193] In December 2012, Juniata County School District administration reported that 362 pupils or 12% of the District's pupils received Special Education services, with 44.5% of the identified students having a specific learning disability.[194] In December 2009, the district administration reported that 351 pupils or 12% of the district's pupils received Special Education services.[195]

In 2007, Pennsylvania Secretary of Education Gerald Zahorchak testified before the Pennsylvania House Education Committee regarding full day kindergarten. He claimed that districts which offered the program would see a significant decrease in special education students due to early identification and early intervention. He asserted the high cost of full day kindergarten would be recouped by Districts in lower special education costs.[196] Juniata County School District has provided full day kindergarten since 2004. The District has seen an increase in the percentage of special education students it serves, yielding no savings.

The District engages in identification procedures to ensure that eligible students receive an appropriate educational program consisting of special education and related services, individualized to meet student needs. At no cost to the parents, these services are provided in compliance with state and federal law; and are reasonably calculated to yield meaningful educational benefit and student progress. To identify students who may be eligible for special education, various screening activities are conducted on an ongoing basis. These screening activities include: review of group-based data (cumulative records, enrollment records, health records, report cards, ability and achievement test scores); hearing, vision, motor, and speech/language screening; and review by the Instructional Support Team. When screening results suggest that the student may be eligible, the District seeks parental consent to conduct a multidisciplinary evaluation. Parents who suspect their child is eligible may verbally request a multidisciplinary evaluation from a professional employee of the administration of the District.[197]

Students who have an Individual Education Plan (IEP) may take the PSSA-M an alternative math exam rather than the PSSA.[198] Some special education students may take the PASA (Pennsylvania Alternate System of Assessment), rather than the PSSA.[199] Schools are permitted to provide accommodations to some students.[200]

In 2010, the state of Pennsylvania provided $1,026,815 for special education services. The funds were distributed to districts based on a state policy which estimates that 16% of the district's pupils are receiving special education services. This funding is in addition to the state's basic education per pupil funding, as well as, all other state and federal funding.[201] The Pennsylvania Special Education funding system assumes that 16% of the district’s students receive special education services. It also assumes that each student’s needs accrue the same level of costs.[202] The state requires each district to have a three-year special education plan to meet the unique needs of its special education students.[203] Overidentification of students in order to increase state funding has been an issue in the Commonwealth. Some districts have more than 20% of its students receiving special education services while others have 10% supported through special education.[204] In 2012, the Obama Administration's US Department of Education issued a directive requiring schools include students with disabilities in extracurricular activities, including sports.[205]

Juniata County School District received a $1,529,979 supplement for special education services in 2010.[206] For the 2011-2012, 2012-2013, and 2013-2014 school years, all Pennsylvania public school districts received the same level of funding for special education that they received in 2010-2011. This level funding is provided regardless of changes in the number of pupils who need special education services and regardless of the level of services the respective students required.[207] Additionally, the state provides supplemental funding for extraordinarily impacted students. The District must apply for this added funding. For the 2014-2015 school year, Juniata County School District received an increase to $1,667,614 from the Commonwealth for special education funding.[208]

Gifted education[edit]

The District Administration reported that 59 or 1.92% of its students were gifted in 2009.[209] By law, the district must provide mentally gifted programs at all grade levels. The primary emphasis is on enrichment and acceleration of the regular education curriculum through a push in model with the gifted instructor in the classroom with the regular instructor. Identified students are given the STEP tests to evaluate areas of aptitude.[210] The referral process for a gifted evaluation can be initiated by teachers or parents by contacting the student’s building principal and requesting an evaluation. All requests must be made in writing. To be eligible for mentally gifted programs in Pennsylvania, a student must have a cognitive ability of at least 130 (+or-2 points) as measured on a standardized ability test by a certified school psychologist. Other factors that indicate giftedness will also be considered for eligibility.[211]

Wellness policy[edit]

Juniata County School Board established a district wellness policy in November 2006 - Student Wellness Policy 246.[212][213] The policy deals with nutritious meals served at school, the control of access to some foods and beverages during school hours, age appropriate nutrition education for all students, and physical education for students K-12. The policy is in response to state mandates and federal legislation (P.L. 108 - 265). The law dictates that each school district participating in a program authorized by the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1751 et seq) or the Child Nutrition Act of 1966 (42 U.S.C. 1771 et seq) "shall establish a local school wellness policy by School Year 2006."

The legislation placed the responsibility of developing a wellness policy at the local level so the individual needs of each district can be addressed. According to the requirements for the Local Wellness Policy, school districts must set goals for nutrition education, physical activity, campus food provision, and other school-based activities designed to promote student wellness. Additionally, districts were required to involve a broad group of individuals in policy development and to have a plan for measuring policy implementation. Districts were offered a choice of levels of implementation for limiting or prohibiting low nutrition foods on the school campus. In final implementation these regulations prohibit some foods and beverages on the school campus.[214] The Pennsylvania Department of Education required the district to submit a copy of the policy for approval.

The Juniata County School District offers both a free school breakfast and a free or reduced-price lunch to children in low income families. All students attending the school can eat breakfast and lunch. Children from families with incomes at or below 130 percent of the federal poverty level are provided a breakfast and lunch at no cost to the family. Children from families with incomes between 130 and 185 percent of the federal poverty level can be charged no more than 30 cents per breakfast. A foster child whose care and placement is the responsibility of the State or who is placed by a court with a caretaker household is eligible for both a free breakfast and a free lunch. Runaway, homeless and Migrant Youth are also automatically eligible for free meals.[215] The meals are partially funded with federal dollars through the United States Department of Agriculture.[216]

In 2013, the USDA issued new restrictions to foods in public schools. The rules apply to foods and beverages sold on all public school district campuses during the day. They limit vending machine snacks to a maximum of 200 calories per item. Additionally, all snack foods sold at school must meet competitive nutrient standards, meaning they must have fruits, vegetables, dairy or protein in them or contain at least 10 percent of the daily value of fiber, calcium, potassium, and Vitamin D.[217] In order to comply with the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 all US public school districts are required to raise the price of their school lunches to $2.60 regardless of the actual cost of providing the lunch.[218] The Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 mandates that Districts raise their full pay lunch prices every year until the price of non-subsidized lunches equals the amount the federal government reimburses schools for free meals. That subsidy in 2013-2014 was $2.93.

In 2014, President Obama ordered a prohibition of advertisements for unhealthy foods on public school campuses during the school day.[219] The Food and Drug Administration requires that students take milk as their beverage at lunch. In accordance with this law, any student requesting water in place of milk with their lunch must present a written request, signed by a doctor, documenting the need for water instead of milk.[220]

Juniata County School District provides health services as mandated by the Commonwealth and the federal government. Nurses are available to conduct annual health screenings (data reported to the PDE and state Department of Health) and to dispense prescribed medications to students during the school day. Students can be excluded from school unless they comply with all the State Department of Health’s extensive immunization mandates. School nurses monitor each pupil for this compliance.[221][222] Nurses also monitor each child's weight.[223]

Highmark Healthy High 5 grant[edit]

In 2009, the Juniata County School District received funding through a Highmark Healthy High 5 grant. Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School received $3,911 which was used to pay for the second grade nutrition education program. Mountain View Elementary School received the same $3,911 which it used for the same nutrition education purpose.[224] Beginning in 2006, Highmark Foundation engaged in a 5-year, $100 million program to promote lifelong healthy behaviors in children and adolescents through local nonprofits and schools. The School also receive a Healthy High 5 grant in 2008.[225]

The Juniata County School District participated in Highmark Foundation’s Healthy High 5 Health eTools for Schools grant which enabled mobile data collection of pertinent health and physical fitness screening data on students K-12 in a database held by InnerLink, Inc. in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.[226] Health eTools for Schools also provided interdisciplinary research-based curriculum in nutrition, physical education and physical activity to participating districts. The program was discontinued in 2013.[227]

Bullying Policy[edit]

In 2009, the Juniata County School District Administration reported 1 incident of bullying in the previous school year.[228][229]

The school board prohibits bullying by district students and employees. A policy approved in March 2009 defines bullying and cyberbullying - Policy 249. The Board directs that complaints of bullying shall be investigated promptly, and corrective action shall be taken when allegations are verified. No reprisals or retaliation shall occur as a result of good faith reports of bullying.[230] All Pennsylvania schools are required to have an anti-bullying policy incorporated into their Code of Student Conduct. The policy must identify disciplinary actions for bullying and designate a school staff person to receive complaints of bullying. The policy must be available on the school's website and posted in every classroom. All Pennsylvania public schools must provide a copy of its anti-bullying policy to the Office for Safe Schools every year, and shall review their policy every three years. Additionally, the district must conduct an annual review of that policy with students.[231] District administration are required to annually provide the following information with the district's Safe School Report: the board’s bullying policy, a report of bullying incidents in the school district, and information on the development and implementation of any bullying prevention, intervention or education programs. The Center for Schools and Communities works in partnership with the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency and the Pennsylvania Department of Education to assist schools and communities as they research, select and implement bullying prevention programs and initiatives.[232]

Education standards relating to student safety and antiharassment programs are described in the 10.3. Safety and Injury Prevention in the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Health, Safety and Physical Education.[233]

Budget[edit]

Pennsylvania public school districts budget and expend funds according to procedures mandated by the General Assembly and the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE). An annual operating budget is prepared by school district administrative officials. A uniform form is furnished by the PDE and submitted to the board of school directors for approval prior to the beginning of each fiscal year on July 1.

Under Pennsylvania’s Taxpayer Relief Act, Act 1 of the Special Session of 2006, all school districts of the first class A, second class, third class and fourth class must adopt a preliminary budget proposal. The proposal must include estimated revenues and expenditures and the proposed tax rates. This proposed budget must be considered by the Board no later than 90 days prior to the date of the election immediately preceding the fiscal year. The preliminary budget proposal must also be printed and made available for public inspection at least 20 days prior to its adoption. The board of school directors may hold a public hearing on the budget, but are not required to do so. The board must give at least 10 days’ public notice of its intent to adopt the final budget according to Act 1 of 2006.[234]

In 2013, the average teacher salary in Juniata County School District was $50,405 a year, while the cost of the benefits teachers received was $20,047 per employee, for a total annual average teacher compensation of $70,453.[235]

In November 2011, the Juniata County School Board approved a 3-year contract with the teachers' union. It included no salary increase in 2012-13, a 1 percent increase in 2013-2014; and a 2 percent increase in 2014-2015. Teachers will also receive annual step increases. Teacher overtime pay was reduced from $40 per hour to $25 per hour. There will now be a cap on retirement pay for accumulated sick days.[236]

In 2009, the Juniata County School District reported employing over 270 teachers with a salary range of a starting at $36,000 to $110,000.[237] As of 2007, Pennsylvania ranked in the top 10 states in average teacher salaries. When adjusted for cost of living Pennsylvania ranked fourth in the nation for teacher compensation.[238] Additionally, the teachers receive a defined benefit pension, health insurance, professional development reimbursement, personal days, sick days, and other benefits.[239] According to Rep. Glen Grell, a trustee of the state teacher retirement fund, a 40-year educator can retire with a pension equal to 100 percent of their final salary.[240]

In 2007, Juniata County School District employed 204 teachers. The average teacher salary in the District was $44,591 for 180 days worked.[241]

Renovations In November 2013, Juniata County School Board approved $16,320,817 for renovations of school facilities. Renovations will include improvements to the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems at East Juniata High School, Juniata High School and Tuscarora Junior High School. Also a will be 12,000 square feet addition will be built at East Juniata High School for added shop space for: building trades, agriculture and industrial arts classes. The addition is projected to cost $2 million.[242]

Per pupil spending Juniata County School District administrative costs per pupil in 2008 was $591 per pupil. The lowest administrative cost per pupil in Pennsylvania was $398 per pupil.[243] In 2008, the district employed Kenneth Albaugh as superintendent for $107,500 by 2010 his salary had risen to $114,000.[244] Albaugh retired in January 2011. In July 2011, the school board hired Richard Musselman as Superintendent at an initial salary of $110,000 with an extensive benefits package.[245]

In 2008, Juniata County School District reported spending $9,092 per pupil. This ranked 500th out of 501 school districts in Pennsylvania.[246] In 2010, the per pupil spending had increased to $9,616.08 which ranked 497th out of 500 school districts in Pennsylvania.[247] Among the states, Pennsylvania’s total per pupil revenue (including all sources) ranked 11th at $15,023 per student, in 2008-09.[248] In 2007, the Pennsylvania per pupil total expenditures was $12,759.[249]

Reserves In 2008, the Juniata County School District reported $4,554,741 in an unreserved-undesignated fund balance. The designated fund balance was reported as $400,000.[250] In 2010, the district reported $1,000,000 in an unreserved-designated fund balance. The unreserved-undesignated fund balance was reported as $4,503,517. PA school district reserve funds are divided into two categories – designated and undesignated. The undesignated funds are not committed to any planned project. Designated funds and any other funds, such as capital reserves, are allocated to specific projects. School districts are required by state law to keep 5 percent of their annual spending in the undesignated reserve funds to preserve bond ratings. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, from 2003 to 2010, as a whole, Pennsylvania school districts amassed nearly $3 billion in reserved funds.[251]

Audits In September 2010, the Pennsylvania Auditor General conducted a performance audit of the district. Serious findings were reported to the administration and school board. The district was unable to substantiate the enrollment figures it reported to the PDE for several years.[252]

Voter referendum In March 2011, the Administration reported a $3.5 million deficit for the next school year. The school board approved a budget that required a voter referendum seeking to raise property taxes over 25% in order to preserve current programs, the teachers' raises and the district wide staffing plan.[253][254]

For the 2011 Spring Primary, the District conducted a voter referendum, asking voters to agree to an 11.35 mill tax increase (25% property tax increase) to fund various school programs and extracurriculars. The referendum failed No - 6,039 votes, while Yes received 1,349 votes. By law, public School District officials are now limited to the increase permitted by the Act 1 Index for 2011. The School Board made significant cuts to balance the proposed budget's $3.1 million deficit.[255]

In June 2014, the Board voted on a motion to spend $48,543 for new band uniforms, including: 100 coats, bibbers, hats and boxes as well as plumes, garment bags and 200 hangers. The vote failed 2 Aye, 5 Nay. Mr Brubaker promptly resigned from the Board and left the meeting.[256] At the same meeting the board approved an extensive list of sports coaches.

Tuition Students who live in the District's attendance area may choose to attend one of Pennsylvania's 157 public charter schools. A student living in a neighboring public school district or a foreign exchange student may seek admission to Juniata County School District. For these cases, the Pennsylvania Department of Education sets an annual tuition rate for each school district. It is the amount the public school district pays to a charter school for each resident student that attends the charter and it is the amount a nonresident student's parents must pay to attend the District's schools. The 2013 tuition rates were Elementary School - $6,782.71, High School - $7,134.77.[257]

Juniata County School District is funded by a combination of: a local earned income tax - 1%, an occupation tax $10 per annum, two per capita taxed - $5 each, a property tax, an amusement tax 5%, a real estate transfer tax 0.5%, coupled with substantial funding from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the federal government. Grants provide an opportunity to supplement school funding without raising local taxes. In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, pension and Social Security income are exempted from state personal income tax and local earned income tax regardless of the individual's wealth.[258] The average Pennsylvania public school teacher pension in 2011 exceeds $60,000 a year plus they receive federal Social Security benefits: both are free of Pennsylvania state income tax and local earned income tax which funds local public schools.[259]

State basic education funding[edit]

According to a report from Representative Todd Stephens office, Juniata County School District receives 50.4% of its annual revenue from the state.[260]

For the 2014-15 school year, Juniata County School District received $9,818,282 in State Basic Education funding. The District also received another $355,679 in new Ready To Learn Block grant. The State’s enacted Education Budget includes $5,526,129,000 for the 2014-2015 Basic Education Funding.[261] The Education budget also includes Accountability Block Grant funding at $100 million and $241 million in new Ready to Learn funding for public schools that focus on student achievement and academic success. The State is paying $500.8 million to Social Security on the school employees behalf and another $1.16 billion to the state teachers pension system (PSERS). In total, Pennsylvania’s Education budget for K-12 public schools is $10 billion. This was a $305 million increase over 2013-2014 state spending and the greatest amount ever allotted by the Commonwealth for its public schools.[262]

For the 2013-14 school year, Juniata County School District received a 1.9% increase or $9,816,476 in Pennsylvania Basic Education Funding (BEF). This is $183,537 more than its 2012-13 state BEF to the District. Additionally, Juniata County School District received $179,010 in Accountability Block Grant funding to focus on academic achievement and level funding for special education services. Among the public school districts in neighboring Perry County, West Perry School District received the highest percentage increase in BEF at 2%. The District has the option of applying for several other state and federal grants to increase revenues. The Commonwealth’s budget increased Basic Education Funding statewide by $123 million to over $5.5 billion. Most of Pennsylvania’s 500 public school districts received an increase of Basic Education Funding in a range of 0.9% to 4%. Eight public school districts received exceptionally high funding increases of 10% to 16%. The highest increase in state funding was awarded to Austin Area School District which received a 22.5% increase in Basic Education Funding.[263] The highest percent of state spending per student is in the Chester-Upland School District, where roughly 78 percent comes from state coffers. In Philadelphia, it was nearly 49 percent.[264] As a part of the education budget, the state provided the PSERS (Pennsylvania school employee pension fund) with $1,017,000,000 and Social Security payments for school employees of $495 million.[265]

For the 2012-13 school year, Juniata County School District received $9,632,939 in Basic Education Funding from the state.[266] The Governor's Executive Budget for 2012-2013 included $9.34 billion for kindergarten through 12th grade public education, including $5.4 billion in basic education funding, which was an increase of $49 million over the 2011-12 budget. In addition, the Commonwealth provided $100 million for the Accountability Block Grant (ABG) program. Juniata County School District received $179,010 in Accountability Block Grant funding. The state also provided a $544.4 million payment for School Employees’ Social Security and $856 million for School Employees’ Retirement fund called PSERS.[267] This amount was a $21,823,000 increase (0.34%) over the 2011-2012 appropriations for Basic Education Funding, School Employees' Social Security, Pupil Transportation, Nonpublic and Charter School Pupil Transportation. Since taking office, Corbett’s first two budgets have restored more than $918 million in support of public schools, compensating for the $1 billion in federal stimulus dollars lost at the end of the 2010-11 school year.

In 2011-12, Juniata County School District received a $9,632,912 allocation, of state Basic Education Funding.[268][269] Additionally, Juniata County School District received $179,010 in Accountability Block Grant funding. The enacted Pennsylvania state Education budget includes $5,354,629,000 for the 2011-2012 Basic Education Funding appropriation. This amount is a $233,290,000 increase (4.6%) over the enacted State appropriation for 2010-2011.[270] The highest increase in state basic education funding was awarded to Duquesne City School District, which got a 49% increase in state funding for 2011-12.[271] In 2010, the district reported that 1,124 students received free or reduced-price lunches, due to the family meeting the federal poverty level.[272]

For the 2010-11 school year, the Juniata County School District received 4.42% increase in state basic education Funding for a total of $10,561,111. One hundred fifty (150) Pennsylvania school districts received the base 2% increase. Among Pennsylvania school districts, the highest increase in 2010-11 went to Kennett Consolidated School District in Chester County which received a 23.65% increase in state funding.[273] Fifteen (15) Pennsylvania public school districts received a BEF increase of greater than 10%. The state's hold harmless policy regarding state basic education funding continued where each district received at least the same amount as it received the prior school year, even when enrollment had significantly declined. The amount of increase each school district received was set by Governor Edward Rendell and then Secretary of Education Gerald Zahorchak, as a part of the state budget proposal given each February. This was the second year of Governor Rendell’s policy to fund some public school districts at a far greater rate than others.[274]

In the 2009-2010 budget year, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania provided a 5% increase in Basic Education funding to Juniata County School District, for a total of $10,114,373. The district also received supplemental funding for English language learners, Title 1 federal funding for low-income students, for district size, a poverty supplement from the commonwealth and substantial federal funding.[275] Among the 500 public school districts in Pennsylvania, Muhlenberg School District in Berks County received the highest with a 22.31% increase in funding.[276] Ninety (90) Pennsylvania public school districts received the base 2% increase. The amount of increase each school district received was set by Governor Edward G. Rendell and the Secretary of Education Gerald Zahorchak, as a part of the state budget proposal.[277]

In the 2008-09 budget, the state Basic Education funding to Juniata County School District was $9,632,911.82. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 1,043 Juniata County School District students received free or reduced-price lunches due to low family income in the 2007-2008 school year.[278]

All Pennsylvania public school districts also receive additional funding from the state through several funding allocations, including: Special Education Funding; Secondary Career & Technical Education Subsidy; Pennsylvania Accountability Grants; and low achieving schools were eligible for Educational Assistance Program Funding. Plus all Pennsylvania school districts receive federal dollars for various programs including: Special Education funding, English Language Learners grants and Title I funding for children from low income families. In 2010, Pennsylvania spent over $24 billion for public education - local, state and federal dollars combined.[279] By 2015, Pennsylvania is spending over $27 billion on public education (local, state and federal resources combined).[280]

Accountability Block Grants[edit]

Beginning in 2004-2005, the state launched the Accountability Block Grant school funding. This program has provided $1.5 billion to Pennsylvania’s school districts. The Accountability Block Grant program requires that its taxpayer dollars are focused on specific interventions that are most likely to increase student academic achievement. These interventions include: teacher training, all-day kindergarten, lower class size K-3rd grade, literacy and math coaching programs that provide teachers with individualized job-embedded professional development to improve their instruction, before or after school tutoring assistance to struggling students. For 2010-11 the Juniata County School District applied for and received $485,876 in addition to all other state and federal funding. The district used the funding to provide full-day kindergarten for the 6th year.[281][282]

Education Assistance grant[edit]

The state's EAP funding provides for the continuing support of tutoring services and other programs to address the academic needs of eligible students. Funds are available to eligible school districts and full-time career and technology centers (CTC) in which one or more schools have failed to meet at least one academic performance target, as provided for in Section 1512-C of the Pennsylvania Public School Code. In 2010-11 the Juniata County School District received $178,441.[283]

Classrooms for the Future grant[edit]

Juniata County School District Administration did not apply for funding. Of the 501 public school districts in Pennsylvania, 447 of them received Classrooms for the Future grant awards.[284] The Classroom for the Future state program provided districts with hundreds of thousands of extra state funding to buy laptop computers for each core curriculum high school class (English, Science, History, Math) and paid for teacher training to optimize the computers use. The program was funded from 2006-2009.

Science It’s Elementary grant[edit]

Lack-Tuscarora Elementary School successfully applied to participate and received a Science It’s Elementary grant in 2008-09. It was the only elementary school in the District to participate. For the 2008-09 school year, the program was offered in 143 schools reaching 66,973 students across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.[285] In 2007, the Pennsylvania Department of Education initiated an effort to improve science instruction in the Commonwealth’s public elementary schools. Called Science: It’s Elementary, the program was a hands on instruction approach for elementary science classes that develops problem-solving and critical thinking skills.[286] To encourage schools to adopt the program’s standards aligned curriculum, the state provided a grant to cover the costs of materials and extensive mandatory teacher training.[287] The district was required to develop a three-year implementation plan for the participating school. The school district administration was required to appoint a district liaison who was paid $3,000 by PDE to serve as the conduit of all information between the district and the Department and its agents along with submitting orders and distributing supplies to implementing teachers. For the 2006-07 state education budget, $10 million was allocated for the program. The grant program was expanded to $14.5 million in the 2008-09 budget. The grant was discontinued in the state’s 2011 budget by Governor Edward G. Rendell.

Other grants[edit]

Juniata County School District did not participate in: Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's Environmental Education annual grants, 2012 Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy grant, 2012 and 2013 nor Pennsylvania Hybrid Learning Grants,[288] nor the federal 21st Century Learning grants.

Federal Stimulus grant[edit]

The district received an extra $1,500,000 in ARRA - Federal Stimulus money to be used in specific programs like special education and meeting the academic needs of low-income students.[289] The funding is for the 2009-10 and 2010-11 school years.

Race to the Top grant[edit]

School district officials did not apply for the Race to the Top federal grant which would have brought the district over one million additional federal dollars for improving student academic achievement.[290] Participation required the administration, the school board and the local teachers' union to sign an agreement to prioritize improving student academic success.[291] In Pennsylvania, 120 public school districts and 56 charter schools agreed to participate.[292] Pennsylvania was not approved for the grant. The failure of districts to agree to participate was cited as one reason that Pennsylvania was not approved.[293]

English language learners grant[edit]

The Federal government provides annual grants to schools to assist in educating immigrant children and children who are identified as limited English proficient.[294] Upon registering for school a language survey is done for all new enrollment pupils, typically in kindergarten or preschool. They identify the primary language spoken at home. This data is collected and submitted to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, which in turn notifies the federal government.[295] In 2012-13, Juniata County School District received $1,901 in Title III funding for English language learners.[296]

Common Cents state initiative[edit]

The Juniata County School Board chose to participate in the Pennsylvania Department of Education Common Cents program. The program called for the state to audit the district, at no cost to local taxpayers, to identify ways the district could save tax dollars.[297] After the review of the information, the district was not required to implement the recommended cost savings changes. The review identified potential annual savings of over $78,000 over a variety of cost centers, including food services, transportation, purchasing and utility costs. Opportunities for savings in food services and utility costs appeared particularly promising for the district.

Real estate taxes[edit]

The Juniata County School Board set property tax rates in 2015-2016 at 58.829 mills. A mill is $1 of tax for every $1,000 of a property's assessed value. Irregular property reassessments have become a serious issue in the commonwealth as it creates a significant disparity in taxation within a community and across a region.[298] Property taxes, in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, apply only to real estate - land and buildings. The property tax is not levied on cars, business inventory, or other personal property. Certain types of property are exempt from property taxes, including: places of worship, places of burial, private social clubs, charitable and educational institutions and government property. Additionally, service related, disabled US military veterans may seek an exemption from paying property taxes. Pennsylvania school district revenues are dominated by two main sources: 1) Property tax collections, which account for the vast majority (between 75-85%) of local revenues; and 2) Act 511 tax collections, which are around 15% of revenues for school districts.[299] The school district includes municipalities in two counties, each of which has different rates of property tax assessment, necessitating a state board equalization of the tax rates between the counties.[300]

The average yearly property tax paid by Juniata County residents amounts to about 2.78% of their yearly income. Juniata County ranked 739th out of the 3143 United States counties for property taxes as a percentage of median income.[310] According to a report prepared by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, the total real estate taxes collected by all school districts in Pennsylvania rose from $6,474,133,936 in 1999-00 to $10,438,463,356 in 2008-09 and to $11,153,412,490 in 2011.[311] Property taxes in Pennsylvania are relatively high on a national scale. According to the Tax Foundation, Pennsylvania ranked 11th in the U.S. in 2008 in terms of property taxes paid as a percentage of home value (1.34%) and 12th in the country in terms of property taxes as a percentage of income (3.55%).[312]

Act 1 Adjusted index[edit]

The Act 1 of 2006 Index regulates the rates at which each school district can raise property taxes in Pennsylvania. Districts are not authorized to raise taxes above that index unless they allow voters to vote by referendum, or they seek an exception from the state Department of Education. The base index for the 2011-2012 school year is 1.4 percent, but the Act 1 Index can be adjusted higher, depending on a number of factors, such as property values and the personal income of district residents. Act 1 included 10 exceptions, including: increasing pension costs, increases in special education costs, a catastrophe like a fire or flood, increase in health insurance costs for contracts in effect in 2006 or dwindling tax bases. The base index is the average of the percentage increase in the statewide average weekly wage, as determined by the PA Department of Labor and Industry, for the preceding calendar year and the percentage increase in the Employment Cost Index for Elementary and Secondary Schools, as determined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the U.S. Department of Labor, for the previous 12-month period ending June 30. For a school district with a market value/personal income aid ratio (MV/PI AR) greater than 0.4000, its index equals the base index multiplied by the sum of .75 and its MV/PI AR for the current year.[313]

The School District Adjusted Index for the Juniata County School District 2006-2007 through 2010-2011.[314]

For the 2015-16 budget year, Juniata County School Board did not apply for any exceptions to exceed their Act 1 Index limit. For the school budget 2015-16, 310 Pennsylvania public school districts adopted a resolution certifying that tax rates would not be increased above its Act 1 Index limit. Another 187 school districts adopted a preliminary budget leaving open the option of exceeding the Index limit. Regarding the pension costs exception, 172 school districts received approval to exceed the Index limit in full, while others received a partial approval of their request. For special education costs, 119 districts received approval to exceed their tax limit. No Pennsylvania public school districts received an approval for the grandfathered construction debts exception.[321]

For the 2013-14 budget year, Juniata County School Board did not apply for exceptions to exceed their Act 1 Index limit. For the school budget year 2013-14, 311 Pennsylvania public school districts adopted a resolution certifying that tax rates would not be increased above their index. Another 171 school districts adopted a preliminary budget leaving open the option of exceeded the Index limit. For the exception for pension costs, 89 school districts received approval to exceed the Index in full while others received a partial approval of their request. For special education costs, 75 districts received approval to exceed their tax limit. For the pension costs exception, 169 school districts received approval to exceed the Index. Eleven Pennsylvania public school districts received an approval for grandfathered construction debts.[322]

For the 2012-13 budget year, Juniata County School Board applied for one exception to exceed the Act 1 Index due to the rapidly escalating costs of the teacher's pensions. For 2012-2013, 274 school districts adopted a resolution certifying that tax rates would not be increased above their index; 223 school districts adopted a preliminary budget leaving open the option of exceeded the Index limit. For the exception for pension costs, 194 school districts received approval to exceed the Index. For special education costs, 129 districts received approval to exceed the tax limit.[323]

For the 2011-12 school year, Juniata County School Board applied for two exceptions to exceed the Act 1 Index: teacher pension and Special education costs. Each year, the School Board has the option of adopting either 1) a resolution in January certifying they will not increase taxes above their index or 2) a preliminary budget in February. A school district adopting the resolution may not apply for referendum exceptions or ask voters for a tax increase above the inflation index. A specific timeline for these decisions is published annually, by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.[324]

According to a state report, for the 2011-2012 school year budgets, 247 school districts adopted a resolution certifying that tax rates would not be increased above their index; 250 school districts adopted a preliminary budget. Of the 250 school districts that adopted a preliminary budget, 231 adopted real estate tax rates that exceeded their index. Tax rate increases in the other 19 school districts that adopted a preliminary budget did not exceed the school district’s index. Of the districts who sought exceptions: 221 used the pension costs exemption and 171 sought a Special Education costs exemption. Only 1 school district sought an exemption for Nonacademic School Construction Project, while 1 sought an exception for Electoral debt for school construction.[325]

Juniata County School Board did not apply for exceptions to exceed the Act 1 index for the budgets in 2009-10 or in 2010-11.[326] In the Spring of 2010, 135 Pennsylvania school boards asked to exceed their adjusted index. Approval was granted to 133 of them and 128 sought an exception for pension costs increases.[327]

Property tax relief[edit]

In 2013, the Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief from gambling for the Juniata County School District was $87 per approved permanent primary residence, with 5,970 residents applying. In 2009, the Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief from gambling for the Juniata County School District was $89 per approved permanent primary residence. In the district, 5,848 property owners applied for the tax relief.[328] The tax relief was subtracted from the total annual school property on the individual's tax bill. Property owners apply for the relief through the county Treasurer's office. Farmers can qualify for a farmstead exemption on building used for agricultural purposes. The farm must be at least 10 contiguous acres (40,000 m2) and must be the primary residence of the owner. Farmers can qualify for both the homestead exemption and the farmstead exemption. The Pennsylvania Auditor General found that 52% of property owners applied for tax relief in Juniata County.[329] Pennsylvania awarded the highest property tax relief to residents of the Chester-Upland School District in Delaware County at $632 per homestead and farmstead in 2010.[330] This was the second year Chester Upland School District was the top recipient. The tax relief was started by Governor Rendell with passage of the gaming law. Rendell promised taxpayers substantial property tax relief from legalized gambling.

Additionally, the Pennsylvania Property Tax/Rent Rebate program is provided for low income Pennsylvanians aged 65 and older; widows and widowers aged 50 and older; and people with disabilities age 18 and older. The income limit is $35,000 for homeowners. The maximum rebate for both homeowners and renters is $650. Applicants can exclude one-half (1/2) of their Social Security income, consequently individuals who have income substantially more than $35,000, may still qualify for a rebate. Individuals must apply annually for the rebate. This can be taken in addition to Homestead/Farmstead Property Tax Relief.[331]

Pennsylvania has one of the highest numbers of school districts in the nation. In Pennsylvania, 80% of the school districts serve student populations under 5,000, and 40% serve less than 2,000. Less than 95 of Pennsylvania's 501 school districts have enrollment below 1250 students, in 2007.[332]

Extracurriculars[edit]

The Juniata County School District offers a wide variety of clubs, activities and sports. Eligibility to participate is set by school board policies.[333][334]

By Pennsylvania law, all K-12 students in the district, including those who attend a private nonpublic school, cyber charter school, charter school and those home schooled, are eligible to participate in the extracurricular programs, including all athletics. They must meet the same eligibility rules as the students enrolled in the district's schools.[335][336][337]

Effective with the 2011-12 school year, students must pay a $250 fee (in advance) to participate in athletics. Booster clubs are responsible for funding all costs for a sport that is not covered by the athletic fee.[338]

Athletics[edit]

According to Pennsylvania’s Safety in Youth Sports Act, all sports coaches, paid and volunteer, are required to annually complete the Concussion Management Certification Training and present the certification before coaching.[339][340]

According to PA Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting Act 126 of 2014, all volunteer coaches and all those who assist in student activities, must have criminal background checks. Like all school district employees, they must also attend an anti child abuse training once every three years.[341][342][343]

The District funds:

Varsity

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