ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — University Preparatory Charter School for Young Men, known as UPrep, says it’s changing the narrative for young men in the city of Rochester. This year, it’s also changing its budget.
Last year, the school spent over $1.1 million on administration. This year, they’re spending a lot more — $300,000 more. It’s also adding people at the top, for a school with fewer than 400 students.
A chief academic officer is making $155,000. This position was previously a principal and now comes with a $55,000 increase.
There’s also a chief operating officer making $100,000. The previous position, the director of operations, made $30,000 less.
They also added two new positions. According to the budgets, the total increase in administrative spending is $325,949.
Dr. Shawgi Tell teaches education at Nazareth College. He looked at the UPrep numbers and found them odd.
“The initial impression is, yes, it does strike me as unusual, but what you really need to look at is the number of administrators in relation to the number of students and teachers and if that is out of whack then the whole scenario is even more strange,” said Dr. Tell. “I think if you have three administrators making between $100,000 a year and $160,000 a year for a student population of 400 students, some might say that seems a little excessive or a little over the top.”
A representative for UPrep said these changes stem from recommendations from SUNY. They also said the raises come with new responsibilities.
Back to the budget — while administrative spending went up, this year’s budget shows the school cut six teaching positions. UPrep said those cuts were on paper and won’t be seen once school starts on Wednesday, but said they’ll have to get back to us on the actual number.
News 8 also reached out to SUNY about the recommendations they made, but we haven’t heard back yet.
This budget was crafted well after the forced departure of UPrep’s founder Joe Munno following the controversy last year about the valedictorian’s speech. He’s now suing the school, the city of Rochester, and Mayor Lovely Warren.