Perkins schools to cut teachers, staff

The Perkins school board is set to trim at least $12 million from its five-year budget in two rounds of staff cuts and programming reductions.
Alissa Widman Neese
Feb 20, 2013

The first round, unveiled Monday, will be permanent.

The second round can be reversed, but only if voters approve a May emergency operating levy, superintendent Jim Gunner said.

To watch videos from the Monday meeting, click HERE and HERE.

For more on the plans, pick up a copy of Wednesday's Register. See the proposed cuts below.

Perkins Schools positions cut on March 13, regardless of levies in May     
Furry Elementary School: $250,000
•Two teachers
•One of three Little Pirates units
•Paraprofessionals for Little Pirates

Meadowlawn Elementary School: $150,000
•One-and-a-half teachers
•Reduction in office aid hours
Briar Middle School: $600,000
•Eight-and-a-half teachers (one in 2014, one in 2015)

Perkins High School: $550,000 to $600,000
•Five teachers
•One secretary
•Several paraprofessionals
•Possible reductions in business, family consumer science, physical education and health departments
District Office: $1 million
•One communications director in 2015
•One students services software
•One-and-a-half secretaries
•One-half school psychologist
•Busing for junior high and high school students living within a mile of campus in 2015

Other areas for possible cuts if May levies fail (minimum $600,000 in cuts needed for 2013-14 school year)
•All Little Pirates units
•Switch from full-day to half-day kindergarten
•Elementary gifted program
•Elementary and middle school guidance counselors
•Elementary and middle school art, physical education and music teachers
•All middle school foreign language programs, teaming, athletics and extracurriculars
•All high school non-essential staff members, athletics, busing and extracurriculars
•High school athletic director and athletic secretary
•High school French and Mandarin Chinese classes

Want to go?
What: Special Perkins school board meeting to discuss district cuts
When: 7:30 p.m. March 6
Where: Perkins High School, Room 805



You know I'm in business for myself and I always spend more than I have coming in.
Sign contract's with differant union's and sub contractor's and always give them what they want,and if I don't have enough money I just overcharge the customer.
Wake up !!! goverment employee's and the way they do business are robbing us blind tax payer's.
It's going on all over the country, remember Madison Wis. Over 10 garbage men making over 80 grand a year. Its all about collective bargining with your money. Big wages,pension funds paying them more when they retire than when they were working. the best of the best health insurance, vacation pay,sick pay. WHAT NEXT Want your toenails clipped once a month and have the taxpayer pay the bill. Give me 2 years and I'll straighten that budget out. LOL
All the wast ,overspending, when I get done with them they will want to treat me like Jimmy Hoffa. LOL
Oh BTW if your one of those goverment employee's that's NOT getting all the perks, welcome to the club.

There you go again

Did you go to Perkins? You must have missed the spelling and punctuation curriculum. Wow, that was painful to read.


LOL. Teaching is one of the few jobs that you will retire and make as much if not more than (with COLA) than you did when you were working. Time to get rid of that retirement plan, we could save billions.



OBVIOUSLY someone who is appreciative of the education system....


That's all you got? When it comes to the voting booth all it takes is to fill out a little circle that says no.

OBVIOUSLY someone who thinks they can win votes by degrading someone and thinking they are some Harvard educated elitist.


Open enrollment is not hard to understand; however, the level of misinformation on here about it is out of bounds. Every kid who comes in to any open enrollment district (and I think all districts in Erie County are open enrollment now) brings approx. $5700 in state money from their home district with them. So, Perkins residents, those open enrollees are helping increase revenues to the district which have allowed us to go more years without being asked for a levy and have kept the amount of the levy requested lower. If you want to be mad about where your Perkins tax dollars are going with students, then you should be mad at the Perkins students who are leaving the district to attend school in other districts because the state money that would be coming to Perkins goes with them to the other district. And you certainly can't support an EHOVE levy since now your tax dollars are educating students from three counties (talk about open enrollment). So, as a business person if I have the option of accepting 400 open enrollment kids into my district and they bring over $3 million dollars with them while losing money from the kids who are leaving, I take the $3 mil. In fact, if the demand is there and the public won't support a levy, I line up more temporary classrooms and invite more open enrollment (another 100 kids = an additional $570,000 gross). Want the district to operate like a business, then let it operate like a business and increase revenues where possible (and districts are pretty limited when it comes to generating more revenue-that's why the funding is so screwed up). Plus, the governor has publicly stated that in two years districts are going to lose more state funding (Perkins will lose another several million dollars).


Let their parents move to the township.

Edwin Ison

What is the amount per child to educate a student at Perkins?
Much more than $5700!
So each open enrolled student actually costs the district money (more than $3000)'s simple math. The Perkins taxpayers pay the difference between the state amount ($5700), and the actual cost to educate one student, a net loss per open enrolled student.
The open enrolled student brings additional revenue to the district, just not enough to cover the cost per student without watering down the education of Perkins kids.


Clearly YOU do not understand open enrollment. If it brings in $5700, yet the expenditures per pupil at Perkins are over $10,000....who pays the extra? ME!

Open enrollment ONLY makes sense if you fill seats. This is not what Perkins has done.

Truth or Fiction

Unfortunately most are missing the point. The Perkins levy is for operating expenses - salaries, books, etc. It is about education. It is about the youth and their future.

I understand that emotions are running high. I can even understand that some in the District feel betrayed but it serves no greater good to deny students the opportunity for a better life.

Your anger over moving operational funds is at best uninformed and movement of those funds will not build a new school. This levy does not build a new school, it helps maintain the level of education you have come to know and expect.


Should have thought about that before they spent all that money on the laptops.


The Perkins levy is for operating expenses. Technically, yes that is correct. That is because after votes twice said they would not pay for new buildings, Gunner and the Board, MOVED OPERATING FUNDS INTO PERMANENT IMPROVEMENT FUNDS.

If Gunner had not unethically moved money that was to be used towards educational expenses of the district (textbooks, faculty, academic programs, extracurriculars etc) into a fund to build his new campus (that was twice rejected) these educational cuts WOULD NOT BE NECESSARY.



This operating levy is half about replacing those funds moved from outside millage to inside millage and half about new operating funding. Unless Mr. Gunner was lying to me during our meeting those funds combined with other inside millage will build the school without public vote. That was the purpose of the the transfer of millage.

As he stated to me " we are taking a calculated risk " moving these funds. We will need to replace these funds in a future levy. Well, the future is now and that's why you have over a 10 mill levy for operations. The BOE and superintendent are hoping the taxpayers will vote for an operating levy because they new they couldn't get a building levy to pass.

This process is nothing more than a shell game between the administration and the public. The end game is to build a new school without having the public voting on the building.

Now, teachers will be laid off and the educational process will be dismantled to facilitate a new school.

"We are taking a calculated risk".

Lets see how that works out.


There are two levies to be put on the ballot. One for the operating levy that hasn't been passed (so they say since 2000) and one for the new school. Money was moved (called inside mileage) to be put to the new school. They took 3mil and moved it. And isn't that what we are short in the operational funds. Someone please correct me if I have my facts messed up.


Gunner has proven time and again he isn't to be trusted with our money. Moving funds, prioritizing football stadiums over school buildings, open enrollment, and all around malfeasance are why I and my family are voting NO.


The superintendent does not act on his own. He makes recommendations to an elected school board who are all reasonably intelligent individuals and are looking to do what's best for the community and the students (not an easy balancing act, I might add). All actions are discussed and debated in open meetings. A decision may be made that is against our own opinion (of course, those criticizing the most could also run for the school board), but in the interest of CIVIL debate, I don't believe we need to accuse people of deceit, conspiracies that don't exist, "malfeasance", lying, and we're certainly not entitled to stating "facts" which are incorrect.


So funds weren't moved? We don't have open enrollment? We didn't build a new stadium before a new school? Seem like facts to me.


Both levies have a snowballs chance in you know where of passing.


But don't worry. These losers will have them on ballots two more times this year


So let's get this straight... Gunner and board twice ask citizens to raise their taxes to fund building a new campus for Perkins Schools. This was twice, by overwhelming majority, rejected by the township's taxpayers.

What do Gunner and the Board do? Move money that was in an operating fund and to be spent on educational/operating expenses... (ya know, to actually educate the district's students such as textbooks, technology, faculty, academic programs, extracurriculars etc) into a fund to build Gunner's new school.

Then, shockingly to Gunner, they don't have money to run the district!

Voters reject raised taxes for new buildings. Voters again reject raised taxes for new buildings. Gunner and Board move operating funds into a fund to build a new building regardless. They now must go back to the taxpayers to raise taxes just to run the district/educate students. And if the levy/tax increase doesn't pass, Gunner has the audacity to threaten that there will be no more full-time kindergarten. Or no more gym class or art class for elementary and middle school. Or no more guidance counselors. Or no athletic director. But, Gunner is getting his new school regardless... Perkins just won't have any money to employ anyone to run the brand new campus! What a joke!

Vote no and encourage the Board to do the ethical thing and move the operating/educational money back where it belongs... in educating the student's of the district....NOT building a grandiose new campus.


Don't forget after they build it they will come back for even more money to operate it!


I myself am a PHS alumni, but my kids attend Sandusky City Schools and I just find it funny how everyone wants to say that the Sandusky open enrolled students are the reason the school system is failing and everyone is so quick to say move to Perkins if you want your kids to attend there and pay the taxes. Funny thing is my kids did the open enrollment for almost 2 years and they ASKED to come back to Sandusky because they liked it better! AND as far as the school receiving money and us not paying taxes is a crock because not only does Perkins receive more money from the state for each of these kids than one person pays in taxes that live in Perkins and we do still pay taxes for Sandusky!!!!! And NO my kids are NOT trouble makers or "ghetto" like everyone ASSumes these kids are they are actual honor roll students who excell at school...yes even when they were at Perkins!


While that may not be the case for your family. 80% of the students at Sandusky receive free/reduced lunches which means most of these kids are members of the non-producing class of Sandusky (unless you are talking about fatherless children). You can bet that they aren't paying any property taxes to support the schools. They are voting for levies that the landlord and the taxpayers who are subsidizing their METRO are paying. So you see, for about 80% of the kids at Sandusky, the workers and retirees in Perkins are footing the bill for their education too.


He's blowing smoke. The first thing they always want to cut is services and teachers. Go ahead, You are way, way over-staffed already.
1) Lay-oof Gunner. You can keep 3 lower paid teachers on his wages.
2) Terminate all the double dippers.
3-10) Don't believe anything these people tell you. My bet is that after the voting in May on the levies (Fail or Pass) the township workers and the policman will be hired back. These are scare tactics and the article Andy (Sr Reporter) did don't add up for Perkins Township. I don't think there is a million dollar shortage. We have been mislead on the Schools, Police station (New and Old) and those in charge have totally lost credibility with the majority of the taxpayers. The voting will probably be close but I think the levies will all fail. If this were a November election they would be defeated by a land slide. They are well aware of the negativity and that's why they chose a May election.


Questions and response to rww859 at 2:01 p.m. on Feb. 19:

1. Will the current open enrollment students stay at Perkins next year or are they being sent back to their home schools?

At this point in time there is no plan to send open enrollment students back to any school. We treat all students at Perkins Schools as Perkins students. Students in open enrollment must reapply every year. Financially, ending open enrollment would eliminate approximately three million, five hundred thousand dollars annually from our revenues. That net amount is roughly equivalent to seven mils of property tax.

2. If open enrollment was used to fill grades that needed 4-5 children, why were there 456 open enrollment students?

I believe there is some misunderstanding between teacher class size and grade level sizes. At the elementary level, individual teacher class sizes are intentionally kept smaller than middle school or high school. We have attempted to utilize the space available in our buildings to maximize the efficiency of our teachers and our district. This meant we could allow more students through open enrollment in some grade levels than others. If you took an average of four more students per class and average of eight classes per grade level times twelve grade levels than add another fifty for kindergarten, it is a total of four hundred and thirty-four using the lower of the two numbers. In the beginning of the school year Perkins had over eighty students on an open enrollment waiting list. When the demand has been even greater than filling existing classrooms, the district has considered adding an additional teacher to create a new class, such as kindergarten. Again, 25 open enrollment students would bring in approximately $140,000. This is more than the cost to add an additional teacher. No Perkins residents are refused a spot in school due to open enrollment.

3. How many teachers were hired for the Open Enrollment?

The equivalent of seven and ½ full time educator positions were hired. The district added a teacher at each grade level from K through 5 to address open enrollment student requests, a ½ time high school social studies teacher, a ½ time Spanish teacher and a ½ time Little Pirate position. Total estimated annual cost for these teachers is approximately $500,000, while open enrollment students will bring almost $3.5 million in revenue annually.

4. Do teachers still get full tuition reimbursement for all the classes they take?

No. Teachers working toward their Master’s degree get reimbursed up to two thousand dollars a year. Teachers at or beyond their Master’s Degree get reimbursed up to one thousand dollars a year. State law requires teachers to take the equivalent of at least two three-credit classes every five years to remain licensed.

5. What percentage do teachers pay for their health insurance?

Teachers are currently paying eight percent of their premium and have gone to a higher deductible of fifteen hundred dollars annually.

6. What percentage do teachers pay for their contribution to State Teachers Retirement System?

All teachers pay the state legal required ten percent.

7. Is the superintendent really getting mileage to drive to Perkins?

No. Law prohibits reimbursing a school employee’s mileage from home to work. The superintendent is given a monthly stipend of $300 to cover all mileage expenses for using his personal car to travel for his job. In a given typical month, the superintendent travels to a variety of state level meetings in Columbus, Marion, Findlay and Bowling Green. He also travels between the schools and to local district events on a regular basis. If we were to pay the superintendent the standard IRS mileage rate of $.55/mile for his professional meetings the cost would exceed the monthly stipend agreed to by the Board.


Only 10% toward their requirement??? VOTE NO!


10% of wages. It is matched by employer at 10.5% +/- depending on which retirement plan is chosen. For further details check this site:

Tell it how it is.

10% of their salary idiot. So if you made 50,000 you would forced to place 5,000 in your retirement.


I see that your property tax dropped too.


Chris - if you moved the $'s back where they belong (inside/outside), eliminated open enrollment (thus eliminating the extra positions that go with it), designed a new school based on a capacity of no open enrollment and keep all current programs (ie., STEM) in place, what would be the annual cost per $100k home?