DIXFIELD — The effect five retiring employees in Western Foothills Regional School Unit 10 will have on anticipated job cuts as the 2011-12 budget is developed is yet to be determined.

At this week’s board meeting, the Mountain Valley athletic director, and four staff members at Rumford Elementary School notified the district that they plan to retire in June. The staff have 117 years of accumulated experience.

Superintendent Tom Ward said each position will be evaluated in a process that will determine whether it should be filled.

With a budget gap of more than $1 million expected, partially because of the loss of the federal stimulus money, Ward has said that some positions may be eliminated.

Last year at this time, more than a dozen professional staff retired, some thanks to an early retirement incentive. A number of support staff also retired, and nearly a dozen others resigned for various reasons. Only one position was eliminated during the budget-cutting process because of the retirements and resignations.

Ward isn’t sure if there are enough eligible employees remaining to offer the same incentive this year.

“We’re still deliberating,” he said Wednesday morning.

In order to make it fiscally worthwhile, he said about 15 people must retire.

The district will know within the next month whether an incentive will be offered.

Retiring at Rumford Elementary School are a kindergarten teacher, a literacy teacher, the guidance counselor and a long-time educational technician.

Ward said administration and the board should have a fairly firm idea of the number and type of job eliminations the district will face in April.

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