Lancaster School District, Pennsylvania

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Lancaster School District
Lancaster, PA
LSD logo.png
District Profile
Superintendent:Pedro A. Rivera
Graduation rate:68.7%
Number of schools:21
Budget: $179.9 million
Website:School Home Page
Board of Education
Board president:Stacey Marten
Board members:9
Term length:4
Lancaster School District is a school district in Pennsylvania that serves the city of Lancaster. It is the 13th largest school district in Pennsylvania, serving 10,851 students in 21 schools with an operating budget of $179.9 million.[1]

About the district

Lancaster School District is located in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Lancaster School District is located in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. According to the 2010 United States Census, Lancaster County is home to 526,823 residents.[2]


Lancaster County underperformed in comparison to the rest of Pennsylvania in terms of higher education achievement in 2011. The United States Census Bureau found that 23.2% of Lancaster County residents aged 25 years and older had attained a Bachelor's degree compared to 27.0% for Pennsylvania as a whole. The median household income in Lancaster County was $55,816 compared to $52,267 for the state of Pennsylvania. The poverty rate in Lancaster County was 9.9% compared to 13.1% for the entire state.[2]

Racial Demographics, 2012[2]
Race Lancaster County (%) Pennsylvania (%)
White 91.3 83.5
Black or African American 4.5 11.4
American Indian and Alaska Native 0.4 0.3
Asian 2.0 2.7
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0.1 0.1
Two or More Races 1.7 1.7
Hispanic or Latino 9.3 6.1

Presidential Voting Pattern[3]
Year Democratic Vote (%) Republican Vote (%)
2012 39.7 58.9
2008 56.0 43.0
2004 33.6 65.8
2000 66.1 31.3

Note: The United States Census Bureau considers "Hispanic or Latino" to be a place of origin, not a race. Therefore, the Census allows citizens to report both their race and that they are from a "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin simultaneously. As a result, the percentages in each column of the racial demographics table will exceed 100 percent. Each column will add up to 100 percent after removing the "Hispanic or Latino" place of origin percentages.[4]


Pedro A. Rivera has been the superintendent of Lancaster School District since 2008. He was raised in the Hunting Park section of North Philadelphia and served in multiple roles in that community throughout his personal and professional life, which has been focused on urban education. Rivera has been a classroom teacher, a union staffer, an assistant principal, a principal and an executive director for the School District of Philadelphia. He earned his Bachelor's degree from Penn State University, Master's degree in education administration from Cheyney University and superintendent's letter of eligibility from Arcadia University. Rivera serves on a number of boards with in the Lancaster community, including the United Way, the Lancaster Economic Development Corporation, the Lancaster Homeless Coalition, LAS (Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents), PLUS (Pennsylvania League of Urban Schools) and AASA (American Association of School Administrators).[5]

School board

The Lancaster school board is composed of nine members serving four-year terms.[6]

Pocono Mountain School District
Stacey Marten At-Large 2015
Jennifer Desmarais At-Large 2015
Randolph Carney At-Large 2015
Harvey Miller At-Large 2017
Linda Troublefield Owens At-Large 2015
Candace Roper At-Large 2015
Radames Melendez At-Large 2017
Adam Schott At-Large 2017
Fanny Castellanos At-Large 2017

School board elections

See also: Lancaster School District, Pennsylvania election (2013)

Members of the Lancaster school board are elected to four-year terms. Each election is held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November of odd-numbered years. Five seats are up for election in November 2015 and four seats are up for election in November 2017.

Public participation in board meetings

The Lancaster school board maintains the following policy on public testimony during board meetings:[7]

1. Purpose

The Board recognizes the value to school governance of public comment on educational issues and the importance of involving members of the public in Board meetings. The Board also recognizes its responsibility for proper governance of the district and the need to conduct its business in an orderly and efficient manner.

2. Authority The Board shall establish guidelines to govern public participation in Board meetings necessary to conduct its meeting and to maintain order.

In order to permit fair and orderly expression of public comment, the Board shall provide an opportunity at each open meeting of the Board for residents, taxpayers, and staff to comment on matters of concern, official action or deliberation before the Board prior to official action by the Board.

If the Board determines there is not sufficient time at a meeting for public comments, the comment period may be deferred to the next regular meeting or to a special meeting occurring before the next regular meeting.

3. Delegation of Responsibility

The presiding officer at each public Board meeting shall follow Board policy for the conduct of public meetings. Where his/her ruling is disputed, it may be overruled by a majority of those Board members present and voting. The Superintendent or his/her designee shall provide each visitor to a Board meeting with a copy of the procedures to be followed regarding public participation in the meeting.

4. Guidelines

A resident or nonresident of the district, any member of the staff or an organization operating in the district may request the placement of a matter on the agenda provided the applicant files a written request with the Superintendent. To be acceptable, a written request should include the name, address and telephone number of the person or persons making the request, the name of the organization or group represented, if any, a statement of action to be requested of the Board, and pertinent background information leading to the request.

Whenever issues identified by the participant are subject to remediation under policies and procedures of the Board, they shall be dealt with in accordance with those policies and procedures and the organizational structure of the district.

The Board recognizes its responsibility to conduct the business of the district in an orderly and efficient manner and will, therefore, require reasonable controls to regular public presentations to the Board. A person wishing to be heard by the Board shall first be recognized by the President. S/He shall then identify him/herself and proceed with his/her comments as briefly as the subject permits and in accordance with this policy. The President is responsible for the orderly conduct of the meeting and shall rule on such matters as the time to be allowed for public discussion, the appropriateness of the subject being presented, and the suitability of the time for such a presentation. The Board as a whole shall have the final decision in determining the appropriateness of all such rulings.

The presiding officer may:

  • Interrupt or terminate a participant's statement when the statement is too lengthy, personally directed, abusive, obscene, or irrelevant.
  • Request any individual to leave the meeting when that person does not observe reasonable decorum.
  • Request the assistance of law enforcement officers to remove a disorderly person when his/her conduct interferes with the orderly progress of the meeting.
  • Call a recess or adjourn to another time when the lack of public decorum interferes with the orderly conduct of the meeting.

No placards or banners will be permitted within the meeting room.

The meeting agenda and all pertinent documents shall be available to the press and public at the meetings.

Broadcasting And Taping Of Board Meetings

Photographic and electronic audio and video broadcasting and recording devices may be used at regular and special Board meetings according to the following guidelines:

  • Photographs, broadcasting and recording of meetings are permitted only when all parties involved have been informed that cameras, broadcasting and/or recording devices will be used.
  • Persons operating cameras, broadcasting and/or recording devices must do so with a minimum of disruption to those present at the meeting. Specifically, the view between Board members and the audience must not be obstructed, interviews must not be conducted during the meeting and no commentary is to be given in a manner that distracts Board members or the audience.



Lancaster School District published its annual budget on their district website.[9]

Expenditures by Category
School Year Staff Expenses Student Services Operational Expenses Debt Service Other Budget Total
Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget Total % of Budget
2012-2013 $125,894,532 70% $12,871,592 7.2% $11,651,069 6.5% $15,377,677 8.5% $14,176,983 7.9% $179,971,853
Averages: $125,894,532 70% $12,871,592 7% $11,651,069 6% $15,377,677 9% $14,176,983 8% $179,971,853

Teacher salaries

Lancaster School District employed 990 teachers during the 2013-2014 school year. Teacher salaries are categorized based on higher education achievement, professional development and years of service. A teacher with a Bachelor's degree can earn higher salaries by pursuing graduate courses. The salary schedule also accounts for graduate degrees by providing higher starting salaries and greater potential salaries. The following table details the current salary schedule negotiated between the district and the Lancaster Education Association:[10]

Lancaster Teacher Salaries
Salary structure Minimum salary ($) Maximum salary ($)
B.A. 43,319 66,61
B.A. + 8 43,457 67,062
B.A. + 16 43,457 68,437
B.A. + 24 45,061 69,429
MA 47,356 72,813
MA + 15 48,460 74,466
MA + 30 49,329 75,769
MA + 45 50,323 77,258
D 51,326 78,761

Schools in Lancaster School District


The district served 10,851 K-12 students during the 2011-2012 school year. It has not published more recent enrollment statistics. The district experienced an 6.3% decrease in enrollment between 2007 and 2011. The following chart details enrollment in the district between 2007 and 2011:

Total enrollment[11]
Year Enrollment Year-to-year change (%)
2007-2008 11,591
2008-2009 11,351 -2.0
2009-2010 11,124 -1.9
2010-2011 10,972 -1.3
2011-2012 10,851 -1.1

District schools

Lancaster School District operates 21 schools listed below in alphabetical order:[12]

Lancaster School District
Buchanan Elementary School
Buehrle Alternative
Burrowes Elementary School
Carter & MacRae Elementary School
Fulton Elementary School
Hamilton Elementary School
Hand Middle School
JP McCaskey High School
King Elementary School
Lafayette Elementary School
Lincoln Middle School
Martin Elementary School
McCaskey East High School
Phoenix Academy
Price Elementary School
Reynolds Middle School
Ross Elementary School
Washington Elementary School
Wharton Elementary School
Wheatland Middle School
Wisckersham Elementary School

Academic performance

Adequate Yearly Progress

Academic performance statistics for the district are available via Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) reports. These reports provide measurements defined by the federal No Child Left Behind Act, which allow the U.S. Department of Education to determine the academic performance of every public school and school district across the country. In Pennsylvania, AYP measures student results for three indicators: attendance (for schools without a high school graduating class) or graduation rate (for schools with a high school graduating class), academic performance on standardized tests and test participation.

In order to be proficient in attendance, schools much achieve a 90% attendance rate or meet a target set in the previous year. The graduation rate measure has a goal of 85%, or a 10% reduction of the difference between the previous year's graduation rate and an 85% rate. For academic performance, the state goals for the 2011-2012 school year were 78% of students scoring at proficient or higher in mathematics and 81% of students scoring at proficient or higher in reading. For test preparation, at least 95% of all students in each subgroup must take the standardized tests.[13] Lancaster School District did not make AYP in 2011 and 2012.[14]

District AYP scores
Performance Indicators 2011 2012
Attendance Y
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Graduation Rate Y
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Academic Performance N
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Test Preparation Y
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Contact information

LSD logo.png
Lancaster School District

251 S. Prince Street
Lancaster, PA 17603

Phone: (717)-299-2700

Website evaluation

Taxes N
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Elected Officials P
Administrative Officials
Contracts P
Audits N
600px-Red x.png
Public Records
Academics N
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Background Checks

School district websitesGuide.png
Transparency grading process

Last rated in January 2010.

The good

  • The current budget is published.[15]
  • Bid requests and results are published.[16]
  • The names and contact information for all administrative officials are provided.[17]
  • The names of all school board members are published.[18]
  • School board meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes are published.[19][20][21]
  • Information on public records is provided.[22]
  • Information on required background clearances is provided.[23]

The bad

  • Contact information is not provided for school board members.
  • Complete contracts are not published.
  • There is no information on taxes, audits, academic performance, and lobbying.

See also

External links

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