Five teachers to lose jobs

Board members approved the cuts at their meeting Tuesday, positioning the district to save about $680,000 a year.
Alissa Widman Neese
Apr 16, 2014

 

A slew of reductions at Huron Schools will leave five teachers jobless by the end of the school year.

Board members approved the cuts at their meeting Tuesday, positioning the district to save about $680,000 a year.

A dozen academic leader contracts — a stipend employees receive for overseeing a department — will be knifed, as will 20 supplemental contracts given to teachers in various coaching and advisory positions. One full-time teacher’s job will be reduced to a part-time position.

Additionally, the district will impose a salary freeze for all administrators in the upcoming school year.

“It will be painful, and it will change the way we do things, but we will still have our key programming in place,” superintendent Dennis Muratori said at Tuesday’s meeting.

Board members cited financial concerns, as well as declining student enrollment, as the reason for targeting the listed programs and teachers.

Officials alluded to the reductions for the past several months.

In January, they first started chipping away at the list by eliminating one high school teacher, as well as the communitybased instruction program the individual oversaw.

Without the reductions, Huron Schools would have likely depleted all its reserve cash by the 2015-16 school year through deficit spending, according to its five-year financial forecast.

Deficit spending will still continue, but at a lesser rate.    

The district will now end the 2015-16 school year with a small cash balance. Its entire annual operating budget is about $14.6 million.

“We want to be fiscally responsible with our tax dollars,” Muratori said. “This will delay the need to ask our community stakeholders for new operating money another year”

The earliest the district is expected to propose a new tax levy is now 2015, rather than this November, he said.

Nonetheless, several Huron High School students at Tuesday’s meeting took a stance against the proposed reductions.

Junior Alex Winschel, a spokesman for the group, read a prepared statement to board members.

He specifically highlighted the negative impacts of severing supplemental contracts used to support the high school French and Spanish clubs, as well as cutting the high school’s assistant band director.

“It is perfectly reasonable for the board to make budget cuts,” Winschel said. “The part that we find alarming is the area where these budget cuts are being made”

About 40 people attended the meeting, with others speaking out about the negative effects of reduced staffing on student performance.

Board member Tim Sowecke suggested the district recruit unpaid volunteers to assist with the aforementioned programs, similar to volunteer coaches for sports. Muratori noted all programming will continue, despite the staffing reductions.

“We will not be eliminating our foreign language or music programs” Muratori said. “But we will need to adjust the way we provide them”

For a detailed list of reductions, click on the pdf below

Comments

rbenn

Some pretty hefty salaries at Huron Schools http://www.buckeyeinstitute.org/...

Informed

Only because they have been teaching for Huron a very long time and have Master's degrees.

SoldOnAcorns

They need to rid themselves of the worthless principal's & assistant principal's. Not one of them could find their a$$ with both of their hands ! I agree...some of these teacher's are WAY overpaid and do not go out of their way to do anything but the bare minimum required of them. Freeze those salaries for as long as you possibly can Muratori !

Informed

The only good principal is no longer with us. RIP, Tanny!

Steve P

Finally a school board that will make cuts to avoid a larger deficient. They kept the Spanish, French courses and band, I am sure that the high school kids can get along without two CLUBS and one less band director. If enrollment is down, shouldn't they need less teachers.

worddrow811

deficit is right below deficient in the dictionary.

Informed

The only problem with not having an assistant band director at the high school is that now you only have one teacher trying to conduct large group, small group, and solos for band contest. There just aren't enough after school hours for all these. Band will suffer.

Informed

I would agree about the clubs, except that these are ACADEMIC clubs--you know, the reason kids are supposed to go to school in the first place. I am sure there are other clubs they could have cut.

Tsu Dho Nimh

Which clubs are not tied to academics? All student clubs support academics.

Informed

No they don't. There are things like art club and teen leadership, which, while important, are not academic.

Stop It

Art club is meaningless? Leadership skills are meaningless? BOTH are as academic as the rest.

Without art, the dreams never come to fruition. It takes a dream to advance in technology.

Leadership skills are worthless? I kinna agree given our state and fed congress, but that doesn't mean there isn't room for improvement. Leadership takes quite a lot, actually. Our current politicians don't fit the bill. Shouldn't we give hope to our kids?

Tsu Dho Nimh

My point exactly. Teen leadership supports the required curriculum of government. Fine arts are required for graduation, too.

Informed

Classes are required, not clubs. Clubs are extracurricular and optional. Sorry, but on what basis is art club more important than foreign language club?

Informed

Where on earth did you get that I said art club and teen leadership club are meaningless? Do you read? I said they are IMPORTANT. And no, teen leadership is not as academic as foreign language.

Tsu Dho Nimh

We are living in an economy of budget cuts. Sounds like these cuts will not impact the educational programs being offered to kids. It might make it a little tougher for the employees to meet their needs but I have faith they can do it.

Informed

The cuts certainly will impact music education at the high school. An assistant band director is a must to offer quality opportunities to succeed in ensembles and solos. There is no way one person can do it all and do it well. Maybe they will get lucky and the asst. will still help out, but I would never expect him to do so for free.
Every student that does a solo or small group ensemble at OMEA band contest has to have numerous meetings with the band director after school to learn the music and practice. There are only so many after school hours available. This is a slap in the face for everything Huron has done over the past 10-15 years to help build the band back up and get it successful again (superior ratings at state). It's bad enough that the district expects band parent volunteers to do so much time and money-wise for a CLASS (the district doesn't even transport instruments).

Tsu Dho Nimh

Be thankful that we can still offer a band program. Many schools in the state have had to cut back or eliminate music programs. I am glad the super and the board recognize the importance of music education and has found a way to keep the band program going. It might look different but at least it's there.

Just curious, what would you cut? Obviously cuts need to be made so where do you think they should be?

Informed

I don't know what I would cut. I'm not a school superintendent, so I don't have to make those suggestions. I guess to start, instead of cutting them completely, I would join the French and Spanish clubs into one Foreign Language club that served both. But one of the last things I would cut would be anything to the band. They have worked so hard to rebuild after the debacle of cuts due to state control.

Tsu Dho Nimh

Technically, they did not cut the club, they cut the stipend being paid to the advisor. The students can still organize a club. The question is: is the club important enough to any adult to volunteer his/her time?

Informed

I don't know if an adult can volunteer to advise a school club. There is liability insurance that has to be in place, and there may be contract stipulations that you cannot replace a paid position with a volunteer one. Students cannot have a school club without an advisor.

Darwin's choice

" Academic leader contracts- a stipend employees recieve for overseeing a department, will be knifed "

Please list these "leaders" and the amount they recieve for "leading" their departments.

Have they ever been paid for this? I think not, so this cut is false.

Informed

Yes, department heads have been paid for taking on this extra role. It's not much, but it is some. I don't know where you get your information from, but it is false.

Stop It

Better hope no one sticks a garden hose down in your rabbit hole.

Informed

I don't even know what you mean by this.

The Big Dog's back

Reading and comprehension are not right wingnut strong points.