Perkins school board meeting

Updates as they happened from the 6 p.m. Wednesday meeting — SEE LIVESTREAM FEED BELOW
Sandusky Register Staff
Jun 12, 2013

The Perkins school board is set to approve a slew of district-wide cuts at its regular meeting tonight.

The meeting starts at 6 p.m. in the Perkins High School auditorium.

A PDF copy of the meeting agenda is posted below.

Keep checking back here for live updates during the meeting, including photos and video.

Comments

Strong Schools ...

We will still be back on the ballot within a year because the state and feds have cut so much money. Perkins 2060...We have the lowest millage in the whole county. We are 14 mills lower than the state average. You are going to pay more if you are a Tiger or a Polar Bear. Go Pirates!

Perkins2060

No I won't. I'm staying here and open enrolling my kids elsewhere. Less money for Gunner and his board to waste on nonsense.

underthebridge

Does anyone know if there are people interested in running against the ones up for re-election this fall?

44870 South

Mickey Mouse? Ronald McDonald? They'd win in a land-slide.

Common Sense

Yet, you dont seem to have the backbone to take on this job. It must be incredibly easy to say all these things across a keyboard, but never at a board meeting.

44870 South

I don't know how to run a backhoe either, but if someone tries to drive one through my yard, I'm gonna tell them NO WAY! Do you really want all the people who are against this to show up at a board meeting? Where would you sit?

Tribester

Folks, this is simple math. EVERY parent in this district should register and vote yes for this levy. If you have two children involved in sports, band, activities, etc. you can pay THOUSANDS in pay to participate fees or hundreds in higher property taxes. DO THE MATH! If every parent in the district registers and votes yes with their pocketbook in mind the levy WILL PASS. By the way, over 500 kids and their parents are STILL trying to open enroll at Perkins next year, so the teachers and the district must be doing something right to generate that sort of demand from other districts. Save Art, Music, PE, Computer, Gifted programs and eliminate paying potentially thousands in pay to play fees and VOTE YES in August. SAVE OUR STUDENTS!

citizen

SAVE OUR STUDENTS! Move operating money back to operations that Gunner unethically and unfairly took from students and moved to building fund. Save our students from Gunner and his board.

If they get their third no vote, maybe they will realize the taxpayers will not be purchasing a new high school building for them, and they can rightfully return and the money and stop with the scare tactics!

citizen

SAVE OUR STUDENTS! Move operating money back to operations that Gunner unethically and unfairly took from students and moved to building fund. Save our students from Gunner and his board.

If they get their third no vote, maybe they will realize the taxpayers will not be purchasing a new high school building for them, and they can rightfully return and the money and stop with the scare tactics!

Perkins2060

What you people fail to realize is only a portion of the Township has kids in school. No voters outnumber you. Keep putting it on the ballot and wasting money. That's more layoffs.

Señor Clown

"If you have two children involved in sports, band, activities, etc. you can pay THOUSANDS in pay to participate fees or hundreds in higher property taxes."

Thousands in fees over what, two, three, four years? How many kids do you have, that you expect every one else to have to pay for so they can play tennis or 3rd seat clarinet? Are you so short sighted that you can't do the math? If you're paying an extra $250-$500 (or worse) every year in property taxes, and assuming you don't plan on moving immediately after the kids graduate, you're going to pay THOUSANDS upon THOUSANDS in property taxes anyhow. The difference is, EVERYONE ELSE WHO OWNS PROPERTY IN THE TOWNSHIP HAS TO PAY IT TOO.

getit right be4...

I love how the minority yes votes are using the students as a support system. A vote No is not a vote against the students but a vote against the decisions of the board. If the board would not keep pushing there agenda then maybe a few more would support the district.

How many no voters would turn into a yes vote if they backed off of the new building and Gunner agreed to resign without taking a bunch of severance pay ??

Vote4Perkins

You are voting no because you do not like the decisions made by the board. Therefore you are going to hurt students and teachers. They are the ones caught in this "match" between the board and disgruntled community members. The teachers have given up so much for the students, its time for the community to do the same. Why should the teachers and students continue to suffer?

Señor Clown

It's never really about the students, or the teachers. It's about the money, and there's never enough of it on either side.

Vote4Perkins

Then why do the teachers and students keep getting affected?

citizen

Let's get this straight.... this is a building levy! THIS IS NOT AN OPERATIONS LEVY. THIS IS A BUILDING LEVY (Gunner is disguising as an operations levy along with a slew of draconian cuts if it isn't passed).

Perkins has enough money to operate the district. Perkins has enough money to educate students, pay faculty and staff, purchase textbooks, technology, arts/athletics/music etc.

Gunner and Board decided that building a new building was more important than actually educating the students so after 2 votes in which the public told them, they would not fund a new building with increased taxes, Gunner and Board unethically (and unfairly to the students) moved the operating money into a building fund to build a new high school!

They then come back to voters and say they have no money and have to, in Gunner's words, "dismantle the district!" No, Jim, you do not have to "dismantle the district"... JUST MOVE OPERATING FUNDS BACK TO OPERATIONS and give up your dream of building a brand new Perkins Schools campus!

Tribester

Where to begin...this is an operations levy, the building project is on hold until we are financially stable. Perkins does NOT have enough money to operate the district whether they move funds back or not, you would still need a 5 mill levy a year from now regardless. Perkins is far from the only district in Ohio to "unethically" move money as you state. Make no mistake, a no vote does not punish Gunner or the board, it punishes the students, teachers, and families of our community. It will also lower the property value of your homes over time as Perkins becomes a "state minimum" school district. Save Our Students! VOTE YES!

citizen

THE BUILDING PROJECT IS ON HOLD UNTIL THIS LEVY PASSES.

Do you not believe that? Perkins already took out a $3 million loan from Citizens Bank to design and engineer the new building!

As soon as this levy passes, the building is set to go and all of the cuts will be rolled back!

VOTE NO ON THIS BUILDING LEVY! TAXPAYERS HAVE ALREADY SPOKEN TWICE... LET'S LET GUNNER HEAR IT AGAIN!

Gunner- who thinks new buildings are more important than educating the students of the district.

Vote4Perkins

This is not a building levy, if you went to the meetings, you would know this. Don't punish the students and teachers for feelings you have toward the board and the superintendent. Save Our Students, Vote yes.

citizen

What do you not understand that this levy is to allow Gunner and the Board to commence the building of a new high school building?

Can I make it any simpler?

Perkins2060

Thank God. I would love my property value to decrease. I'm not moving so that's less taxes I pay! Good deal!

Señor Clown

"It will also lower the property value of your homes over time as Perkins becomes a "state minimum" school district."

Sounds good to me - declining property values = lower property taxes.
Do you honestly think that the parents that are already two mortgages into a $400k home that's now worth $250k are going to pack up and move away?
To say the building project is 'on hold' until the district is financially stable is a joke - if state cuts continue, by the time the district is financially stable, the building will be older than the pyramids. There's no sustainable future for public education as the system currently exists, and begging for more money every election isn't going to save it.

fifteenthgreen

Stay the course and work towards a resolution for both sides. We need to be a community again.

eriemom

The bank that Mr. Chapman works for. At least that is the rumor I heard.

I'm Done

Citizens Bank. Do we know what was used for collateral? Think about that. Banks just don't give away money.

citizen

Alissa Widman- I know you are in a difficult position with Doug Phares being such an adamant supporter of Perkins Schools and Matt Westerhold in a love affair with Gunner....

But could you do an article on why Jim Gunner and the Board decided it was more important to build a new high school building than educate the students, pay faculty and staff, provided arts/athletics/music, purchase textbooks, technology etc. Because, Gunner and Board were the ones who decided to move the money from operations into a fund to build a new high school. This was after 2 no votes by taxpayers stating they will NOT raise their own taxes to build a new high school.

So, in summary, could you please explain why Gunner and Board thought it more important to build a new high school than educate the district's students.

Secondly, if this levy passes (which it likely will, yet again), could you please interview Gunner and Board and ask if they will finally MOVE THE OPERATING FUNDS BACK INTO OPERATING. No need for the scare tactics and all these draconian cuts... just move the money back to operations. If this levy fails, I cannot imagine (well actually with Gunner, anything is possible) Perkins "dismantling the district" (as Gunner himself stated) yet build a new high school with the operating funds.

Thanks, Alissa, I appreciate it. Like I said, I know it's difficult with Phares and Westerhold in the bag for Perkins. It would be nice though if the Sandusky Register would do half the hard-hitting reporting on Perkins Schools it does ad nauseum with the city of Sandusky.

lifetimeresident

Cant pay the bills on the same amount they recieved 13 years ago. GO ASK A DELPHI WORKER OR FORD WORKER HOW THEY DO IT. Neighbors said NO WAY unless GUNNER resigns would they ever even consider it. I will vote yes for my Grand children. But this gets defeated BIG again. For the sake of the CHILDREN. Mr. Gunner, PLEASE RESIGN. My neighbors just dont trust you. Consider the CHILDREN.

Perkins2060

Delphi and Ford are gone. Ventra pays peanuts compared to Ford and KBI is on its way out. You think those people are buying this nonsense? Nope.

AllTheAnswers

Gunner has bullied himself right through the district....without ever having to move here. He conned the BOE, they didn't ask questions. What has Perkins accomplished the last several years? Broken windmills, horrible laptop program (Gunner received Doctorate in 2007 for Technology in Education), lowest morale in Perkins history, declining academic ratings from state, lower scholarship award monie going to students, overcrowding due to open enrollment,district lawsuits, no STEM, condemned stadium, and on and on. What has he and the Board done for our students? To think they blew through all our money AND blew through open enrollment profits. Just wow! Would love to see the math on what the new fee structure would generate....based upon numbers it appears to approach $1M annually. Where would this money go? No trust! If it's for the students, move inside money back, Super resign, lower open enrollment numbers and make them pay triple fees, publish a 10 year plan for new building (how about just demolishing North and rebuilding that section), and just tell the community the truth. What has happened to this district almost borders on criminal.

RMyer

There is so much that needs to be addressed in your comments that it's hard to know where to begin. I'll try a couple, but if there are others you would like addressed let me know. Broken windmills-that was part of the overall energy efficiency program that the district signed with Honeywell to save taxpayers energy costs. It was a good idea-not the districts fault they didn't work properly. In fact, we didn't pay a dime for them and were allowed to retain the grant money that was attached to them due to the inability of the company to get them engineered correctly.

"Horrible laptop program"-other educators from around the state have come to our district to study our "horrible" program. It has been recognized statewide/nationally as has the STEM initiative.

"Blew through open enrollment dollars"-the state has cut $2,000,000. Open enrollment dollars have kept this district from asking for higher levy amounts for five years. "Lowering open enrollment" will cause more dollars to disappear, which will result in a higher levy amount needed (and we don't want that). A district cannot charge open enrollment students "triple" fees.

There was a master facility plan developed at least 5-7 years ago. The board has that information.

Demolishing the North section and rebuilding. I believe (having asked two people who should know about this) that if you do that, then the whole building has to be brought up to current code (currently has no fire suppression system, electric running in conduit on outside of building, accessibility issues, asbestos abatement issues, and so on).

fifteenthgreen

North end is not that bad. It still works. Floors a little creaky. :)

AllTheAnswers

As an educator in the system, I understand your personal stake is high. However, I respectfully disagree with your inside "rose colored glasses" view.

Per windmills, yes Honeywell made an exaggerated savings of $1.7M. Per past administration public meeting statements, "payments to Honeywell were stopped." This, in fact, means Perkins Locals was actively transacting taxpayer money. If as you state it resulted in a 0 balance (that is not appearant in financial statements), plus Perkins kept some grant money, that means a profit was made. Where is this money?

What was laptop expense? How long of a contract? Did original contractrun its' full course (we both know the answer is no)? What were new expenses? Have students received any money back as promised? Where graduating students allowed to purchase laptop as originally promised? No to both if you weren't sure of either answer. Most teachers have become detached from teaching and no longer communicate to the parents. Grades seen't updated. Teachers enter 0 for upcoming assignments which messes up GPA on a real time basis. Just follow the students on social media sites during school hours, it's pretty disgusting. Computer policies are old and inadequate. Computer Technology changes rules weekly. My opinion is that the district has done a poor job of managing this resource. Great program on paper (why others study it), horrible and costly implementation.

Is Perkins CURRENTLY STEM certified?

If state cut Perkins Locals by $2M but open enrollment brought in $2M, that's a net gain of zero. Why is the system in such a hole? Who is fighting the state to get more money back? Which legislatures are actively involved?

The master plan did NOT call for a $100M super campus. Nor did it call for the current 7-12 Academy. What good is a paid plan if it is not followed? Did this plan state inside millage was the avenue to success? Again, the answer is no.

If North wing is demolished (is it hazardous or not?) a new 2-3 story technology based new structure could go up. Just North of current structure, remaining detached. This new building would nog require the "whole HS" to be upgraded to new standards.

In the end, current administration is acting upon wants...not needs. They have lost public trust. Your Super's published quote that Perkins will not exist if they don't pass a levy solely shows the arrogance of admin. Bullying tatic! Old and trite.

underthebridge

The laws regarding open enrollment do not allow the district to charge those students any more to participate in extra-curriculars. As a matter of fact, Gunner said at the last board meeting that if an open enrollment student can't pay the fees they can't be prohibited from participating in sports or extra-curricular activities.

RMyer

I don't know about this. I was at the last meeting and didn't hear that. I will, however, be checking. I think there are some students who are economically challenged who may not have to pay the fees, but I think they have to meet the same guidelines as those students who qualify for the federal/state lunch program.

fifteenthgreen

This is a huge part of this campaign. We need to find an answer for these folks!

underthebridge

You are right, but that is the point. It isn't their Open Enrollment status that allows them to play without paying, it is their status receiving free lunches. (Go to the 2nd video at about 7:20 from the last televised board meeting) I know the Open Enrollment program boosted the financials for the district, but I wonder in what ways it changed the socio-economic status of the district. I recall that there are way more students eligible for free/reduced lunches now which is the general guideline for defining poverty. Do you know what the statistics are on that?

eriemom

I think this can be found on the state board of education website. The test results will be released soon as well, so you can check the percent of students enrolled who are considered to be low SES.

Strong Schools ...

We can't force students to pay if they are on a free lunch program. Check your law books!

Vote4Perkins

AllTheAnswers, do you know why he didn't move here?

Perkins2060

Who cares. He's not here. That's the point. Resign and move back home and take care of your personal garbage. He also said last meeting that he Will never move here as long as we don't pass his levies so he can build his dream building. Go home please

Vote4Perkins

He had to take care of his sister who had cancer. Put yourself in his shoes...what would you do if someone in your family had cancer and you were the only one that could take care of them.

Perkins2060

I would resign my position and stay home. But no, not him. How inconsiderate a person he is.

AllTheAnswers

Are you aware that situation positively corrected itself early on in his tenure at Perkins Locals? A non-issue. Are you aware Mr. Gunner is given a stipend to travel? With the salary he receives from THE TAXPAYERS, he should not be entitled to a travel stipend. Huge salary, travel expenses, doesn't pay local taxes, cancer in remission. He should live here.....no wait, he should resign immediately since this community wasn't/isn't good enough for him. What he did THEN was honorable.....no longer part of the equation.

fifteenthgreen

Going to be a long summer!

fifteenthgreen

Need to find a resolution to this crisis that avoids job loss!

Perkins2060

Vote no.

Vote4Perkins

Vote yes.

Perkins2060

Will never pass. Keep dreaming.

Vote4Perkins

Thats your opinion based on loose facts.

Strong Schools ...

I am dreaming of the day when Perkins 2060 stops responding. Give some facts once in a while, will you!

Perkins2060

Fact. Levy failed twice. Fact. Levy will fail again and again and again.

Perkins2060

Keep dreaming.

fifteenthgreen

Save teacher's jobs!

lifetimeresident

I was told by the guy that lives in the cardboard box by the Mall, Mr. Kustec retired. Any truth to that. If so why is Mr. Miller out a job?

Pirate Mom

Mr. Kustec has not retired.

grewuphere

FYI, We the band parents are paying the usual $300 for band camp per student.. absolutely nothing to do with school. That is not a scare tactic.

Strong Schools ...

Under the Bridge...Are you thinking about running for the board?

Strong Schools ...

This levy will SAVE OUR STUDENTS. Some childen are not strong academically and rely on arts and athletics to excel and feel accomplished. I don't want to take that away from any child. Our district prides itself on educating well rounded students that can excel in arts, athletics, and/or academics. We have students that can succeed in all three! I dont want to cut any programs for the sake of the students and our community.

We need to move on and think about the stduents! Vote Yes and SAVE OUR STUDENTS! Think long term and stop living in the past.

Wald

Gunner unethically stole from the voters, and yet a levy was just passed in May. Now you want more. No way.

Strong Schools ...

Gunner has announced everything at the board meetings. He has been honest and up front with our community. It is not his fault if only six people show up.

citizen

OTHER THAN CHOOSING TO BUILD A NEW BUILDING OVER THE EDUCATION OF STUDENTS IN HIS DISTRICT. Yes, very honest and upfront.

Fromthe419

From and outsider looking in, have Gunner and the BOE move the funds that went from a new building costs and move them back to operational costs. If there is a negative effect then put it on the ballot. The voters have spoken and they do not want a new school, if there is a deficit in operation costs, I am sure the Perkins voters will approve it/.

Strong Schools ...

The levy that was passed was a renewal. The renewal does not bring in any new money and keeps everything the same financially. We are very grateful that it passed! We have not passed a levy for new money in 13 years. The well has run dry. Our board and Gunner have been very creative to bring in more money for our district. Open enrollment, grants, partnerships, etc have helped us stay off the ballot for the past five years. He has been committed to making our district better. We need to Vote Yes and show we are just as committed to our students, if not more.

Strong Schools ...

We would still have to go on the ballot even if they move the millage back. This levy is not about buildings. The levy on August 6 is not about buildings! We are trying to save everything that is being cut. All of the cuts were announced at the board meeting tonight. We do not want the state to come in and take over because it will cost us more millage in the long run. It is actually cheaper to pass it now or the millage keeps going up.

Wald

So you're saying that if the August levy passes no new schools will be built? Are you really that naive?

citizen

This is a building levy.

Taxpayer vote twice to not raise their taxes to build a new high school.

Gunner then moves funds set to educate the students of the district, pay faculty and staff salaries, purchase textbooks, arts/athletics/music etc.... and moves these funds into a building fund.

Comes back to taxpayers payers with these wild cuts, scare tactics and saying he will have to "dismantle the district" unless we pass this new levy.

I cannot make it any simpler than that. This is a building levy.

character counts

Good for you Strong Schools! You make so much sense, and answer so many questions. If I was a no vote before, you can surly count on me to VOTE YES now! And for a good laugh if you look back on the majority of the blogs, these same negative voters have left the same tired old comments. It's like Charlie Brown "blah, blah, blah, blah" Stand up Perkins Schools. KEEP THESE POSITIVE COMMENTS COMING! I am so proud of this district, the teachers, and the students! LET'S PASS THIS LEVY!!!

Strong Schools ...

Thanks, Character Counts! I am so glad you joined us in supporting the levy and trying to share the message. I too, am tired of the same old negative stuff. I feel like some of the negative bloggers do not share any facts and the facts they do try to share are completely false and the public believes them. They hang on to the past and can't look to the future for our students.

To all of the blog readers, please educate yourself and ask questions. The "yes" voters will be sure to give you factual information. Also, you can go to the Perkins Schools website and submit a question without giving any personal information. Someone will be sure to answer your questions. I stumbled across this resource when I was looking up some information on the site.

character counts

STAY STRONG, because things will get better. It might be stormy now, but it can't rain forever! and for the negative bloggers..... You can't live a positive life with a negative mind! VOTE YES FOR PERKINS SCHOOLS!!!!!!1

Señor Clown

You can't be fiscally responsible by continuously asking for more money, and repeatedly being told no. Residential property owners cannot afford it. When the retirees who are actually drawing a good pension pack up and move to Florida, and the bottom drops out on the bloated health care industry in the area, what's going to be left? Hotels, McDonalds, four gas stations, and corn fields.

Edwin Ison

Will the new campus be built if this levy passes?

fifteenthgreen

The new campus is supposedly on hold???

character counts

Edwin, They have that on hold. They have clearly stated that even with a passing levy in August, they WILL NOT build until the district is financially stable. They also stated that they would not take action to build also because the state has to give it's financial forecast. This is given twice a year.

Edwin Ison

So they have moved monies to help fund a building, spent millions for a sports complex, and even with this levy proposal they cannot build the new campus?
So that means even more levies will be needed to build new buildings and then more levies to maintain them.
Seems this whole WILL NOT build until stability is reached is disingenuous. There is NO financial stability in public school finance.

Señor Clown

They'll be quick to point out that the parents and boosters helped raise or secure much of the funding for their darling new sports complex, but now that pay-to-play fees are on the horizon, they're up in arms.

Edwin Ison

Character Counts.... define "financial stability" as it pertains to a condition of committing to new construction.

citizen

Oh, well that's comforting.

Until the district is "financially stable."

You mean as soon as this levy is passed.

Again, once this levy is passed, they are building a new high school campus. THIS IS A BUILDING LEVY.

Gunner and Board already took out a $3M loan from Citizens Bank to design and plan the new high school. THIS IS A BUILDING LEVY.

Can we make it any clearer?

underthebridge

Strong Schools - I know a lot of people who express interest in running for the BOE to serve the community. I've got some other ongoing concerns that prohibit my participation at that level. But I do what I can: I am informed. I research and read; not just what the district provides but also things actual information from the State of Ohio. (Speaking of which, read the actual rules and guidelines about Open Enrollment. I'm not against it entirely, but how the law is written is not what was advertised to our district when it was implemented). And I vote.

Gunner, the BOE, and some levy supporters make the mistake of assuming that those who have voted against the levy are evil, uninformed, or anti-children. For the record, I am dissatisfied with Gunner, the BOE, and the direction they've taken this district AND I ATTEND BOE MTGS. I'd like the levy supporters to also work on identifying and supporting some viable candidates to oppose the 2 who are up for re-election in November. We need fresh perspective and alternative views.

Wald

What is it that you think no voters don't understand? Did or did not Gunner unethically steal funds? Was or was not 1.7 million dollars spent on a new stadium (in addition to the community donations)? The yes voters act like everyone is too dumb to understand what they want. Gunner wants his new schools and since he isn't getting one he's taking it out on the kids. Of course, he doesn't live in this community, so what does he care?

fifteenthgreen

Thank you for your input.

character counts

Charlie Brown quoted this as: "wah, wah, wah, wah." Vote YES! Plant the seeds of failure and failure will follow. If constructive thoughts are planted, positive outcomes will be the result. I'm over the same comments that never offer a solution. I BELIEVE in this district, I BELIEVE in the teachers, and most importantly I BELIEVE in the students. I want nothing but positive to rain on their lives. I will think positively, I will vote positively, and I will do anything in my power, and control to NEVER watch a child suffer. I will NOT succumb to negative antics. I WILL NOT succumb to negative people. I WILL NOT add to a problem, but in turn search for a solution. These children often suffer too much at home. Never let a child suffer to "TEACH" people a lesson. STAND UP LOUD AND CLEAR! STUDENT'S OF PERKINS....YOU HAVE MY VOTE! YOU ARE WORTH IT! VOTE YES!!

Edwin Ison

All the rah! rah! aside, can you answer my question above regarding financial stability?
And what are they doing with the monies taken that cannot be used for day to day operations?
Is that how the studies and plans are paid for to the tune of several millions?

fifteenthgreen

Agree.

character counts

I WILL NOT debate anything with you. You already have your answer in your mind. Nothing I respond will change what you are already thinking. I WILL NOT debate. I WILL NOT succumb to negativity. Stay positive. IGNORE THE NEGATIVE. VOTE YES!

Edwin Ison

Maybe these are the questions that need to be answered?

I haven't made one negative comment.... I was under the impression that questions were welcomed by the pro levy people to try and sway the undecided.

Perkins2060

Must have been a great pep rally tonight. Just imagine. For every one of you yes Gunner drones there are 10 of us no voters. Keep trying. You look like fools.

Señor Clown

Levy committee volunteer recruitment drive.

character counts

Stay positive! VOTE YES!

Wald

Character counts is typical of the levy supporters: name-calling, arrogant, and a bully. He or she thinks we should vote yes just because he says we should. Sorry, but I know the facts, and the facts say to vote no until Gunner goes and someone is brought in who deserves our trust.

Señor Clown

Problem is, who CAN you trust in public school administration? To get to that position, you basically have to be a politician, and how many of those can you trust with your money?

PrideofNewark

My name is Tony Miller, a 1999 graduate of Perkins High School, and I am not afraid to state who I am in this discussion. I am currently one of four band directors in the Newark City School district and the brother of Mr. Joel Miller. I have been teaching for 7 years and in 2 of those years, I had the privilege to work under Mr. Miller at Newark.

When Mr. O'Shaughnessy retired two years ago, Joel was hired to take his position with him also being considered the "heir" to Mr. Kustec's position. At the end of the school year there were 6 music teachers in the district:

Mr. Kustec - HS/MS/Elementary Band
Mrs. Dinovo - Furry Music
Mrs. Weilnau - MS/HS Choir
Mrs. Conkey - MS Music
Mr. Miller - MS/HS Band
Ms. Lay - Meadowlawn Music

If you look at the agenda and the cuts/transfers that were made, three of those names are listed. Mr. Miller and Ms. Lay no longer are employed, and Mrs. Dinovo, due to having certification, is being involuntarily transferred to 3rd Grade by the district. This leaves 3 music teachers in the district. So, now there is one band director, one choir director, and one music teacher left in the district. For a district this size, this is a huge concern for both the future of the programs and for the music education of our students.

In Newark, we have 4 band directors, 3 orchestra directors, 4 choir directors, and music teachers for each of the 7 elementary schools. Total, we have 18 music teachers in the district. We also serve a community in which almost all of our buildings qualify as being "low-income schools". I teach in a middle school that serves a population with over 70% being deemed as a low-income family. Yes, our school district is larger than Perkins, but Perkins is NOT a small school district. Three music teachers is unacceptable.

Do I have a vested interested in this matter? Of course, I do. I am the oldest of five children that my parents sent through the Perkins school system, I am a proud Alum of the PHS Band, my brother is losing his job in the district, and my sister-in-law (Katie Toft-Miller) is also losing her job.

To me, the district has made MAJOR mistakes during Gunner's reign. However, the only way that anything can change is for a NEW levy to pass. Renewals are great, but today's money is not the same as it was in 2000. Between inflation and the continuous loss of financial support from the State of Ohio, this renewal will barely make a dent.

It pains me to see good people suffer. It pains me to see this district wither away due to a lack of community support. I urge you to stop being petty. The money that a homeowner will pay per year is minimal in comparison to the damage that will be done to the schools and the programs within.

Maybe you don't stop at McDonald's as much. Perhaps that 12 pack isn't as important as your child's education. How much did that carton of cigarettes cost? Maybe it is time to rethink the cell phone plan...do you really need 16 gigs of data? Let's look at the cable bill...how many of those 2,000 channels do you even watch? That 18 holes of golf you paid for last weekend...

I'm just saying. We live in a world where materialism and luxury reign supreme to all else. It is a well known fact that schools in Ohio are improperly funded, but it is what it is...it isn't changing anytime soon.

I urge all of my classmates, those before me, and those after me to support this levy. If this levy passes, it gives the district hope. August is of utmost importance. Then, we can focus on November and getting some competent board members elected. Finally, if the rumor is true, Gunner will retire at the end of next year, and there will be a new board in so that a retire-rehire WILL NOT HAPPEN!

Everything is in your hands. Someone afforded you the opportunity...now it is your turn to afford the current and future students of Perkins the opportunity to receive a proper education!!!

Wald

Thanks for telling me how to spend my money. Voting no.

Perkins2060

Music is overrated.

fifteenthgreen

Newark Levy passes - 2009

Tuesday May 5, 2009 11:43 PM

What happened: Voters sent a clear message to Newark schools in approving a 7.5-mill additional property tax to help save school programs. The 5-year levy will raise $5.9 million a year to keep the district solvent and prevent the loss of more teachers and programs. The issue passed with 51 percent of the vote yesterday, according to final, unofficial results.

What now? The levy will cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $230 a year in new taxes and is expected to keep the district solvent through at least 2012. The levy would not reverse any of the almost $1.9 million in cuts made since a November levy failed. Board members did agree, however, to bring busing back beyond state minimums and not to raise pay-to-participate fees for athletics and extracurricular activities.

"The community finally realized the money you put into education is an investment for the future. This is not an extra money levy, this is just to keep us solvent for three years," Superintendent Keith Richards said.

fifteenthgreen

Newark Schools - 2013 Coming back for more $$$!

Jun. 11, 2013

NEWARK — The Newark school board took the first step toward putting a renewal of its 7.5-mill emergency levy on the November ballot during its Monday meeting.

The board voted unanimously in support of the renewal. Now Treasurer Jeff Anderson must get the issue certified by the auditor before the board votes on the final ballot language.

First passed in May 2009, the emergency property levy helped stabilize the district and allowed it to bring back busing. It was the district’s first successful try for new operating money since its levy failed in November 2006.

The tax raises $5.9 million every year and costs the owner of a $100,000 home about $230 per year.

Originally expected to keep Newark financially solvent for about three and a half years, the levy has lasted more than four years, board member Tom Bline said.

“I think that people need to look at how well the district has handled their finances,” he said.

If it doesn’t pass in November, the district would have several more opportunities to renew it before it expires at the end of 2014.

Anderson emphasized that the levy is a renewal, meaning voters won’t be paying any new money. He encouraged anyone with questions about the district’s finances to contact him.

“I will open the books for this school district and prove that this money has been well-spent,” he said.

fifteenthgreen

State wide issue!

Brainiac2007

People of Perkins who really feel that this school district hasn't went down the tubes already, your sadly mistaken. Our faculty have been in the paper for inappropriate issues which drop the "pep" of the school about 2 levels in itself, then you people allow Gunner to rule you, steal your money, and claim "oh my goodness, look this levy needs to pass to help our children".....where has helping our children fallen in to his scope of practice since he took office? You individuals that are boo hooing must have children in sports with "names" that get to play regardless of the lack of talent while other children who have talent sit the bench! This isn't about you all wanting our students to have a wonderful education this is about you wanting your children to have their name in spotlights! That's pathetic. I used to carry "Perkins Pride" with pleasure, bragging to my long time friends about the education but I can tell you this past year at the High School was NOT focused on education, the students had more goofing off time then a kindergarten class. Why cant the kids bring home books to study? The computer ideas are horrible, you make these kids pay for extra chargers when they are stolen on your own property, if a child uses the restroom they return with no charger and the school thinks the parents should pay...I THINK NOT...This school system will never get any extra money from me, they do not know how to use their funds PERIOD! Sorry but this district has turned into a joke!

bao

didnt we have close to a 5 million dollar surlpus last year in the operating fund?

Perkins2060

Gunner and his minion board moved all the money to build their taj majal. Now they're "broke". Merge with Sandusky!

fifteenthgreen

Not sure on the surplus.

citizen

THIS IS A BUILDING LEVY.

Gunner was told NO to a taxpayer funded new campus TWICE.

He unethically (but legally) moved operating money into a building fund. Gunner chose a new high school over providing education for the district students. Gunner and board then took out a $3,000,000 loan from Citizens Bank to design and plan the new high school campus.

Gunner and Board then come out with all these massive cuts, saying they will "have to dismantle the district" and scare tactics.

Can I make it any simpler for anyone? THESE ARE THE FACTS. THIS IS A A BUILDING LEVY.

Perkins2060

I read somewhere that a certain board member is affiliated with Citizens Bank. Is this true?

PyrkinsPyrate

As a Perkin's Homeowner I have felt insulted, degraded, and angry by Gunner's manipulative ploys and dishonest plots to build his new school at any cost to our community. He is simply looking to build his CV on the backs of the Perkin's property owners and it is obvious from the fact that he never even moved here that he will ride on into the sunset seeking greener pastures and boasting to some other (slightly larger) school district that he successfully build a brand new opulent facility against the residents wishes. This is the whole story: Gunner wants to build a school that we will have to pay for and maintain only to enhance his credentials so he can move on to bigger and better things. Somewhere a school board who shares his contempt for the voters and taxpayers will be impressed by what he pulled off. Even more insulting is the long post by some school teacher whimpering and whining about the misery of having chosen a saturated career and how taxpayers ought to support him. The nerve of him to babble on about whether the no voters have too many TV channels or buy beer. This is the pure arrogance of the clique of people educating our children and it is very important that we respond to this chutzpah at the polls by giving another loud and clear no vote.

Perkins2060

.

Lil DAB

"The nerve of him to babble on about whether the no voters have too many TV channels or buy beer. This is the pure arrogance of the clique of people educating our children and it is very important that we respond to this chutzpah at the polls by giving another loud and clear no vote."

BRAVO BRAVO!!!!

eriemom

Hold up there Lil DAB. The man who wrote the above letter does not teach in the Perkins School District.

Keep in mind that the teachers who do work FOR the building principal-->Superintendent--> Board.

The New World Czar

"Saturated Career"- that is absolutely on-target. There are way too many music education graduates for the number of positions available.

PyrkinsPyrate

What we really need is a state senator to write a bill that prevents the schools from being able to constantly go to the polls to ask for more money. If the voters say "No" then the school boards have to live with it for a couple years.

RMyer

What we need is for more citizens to demand that elected officials fix the school funding issue. Preventing schools to ask for more money is not a solution; the state funding process forces this to happen. Happens all around the state every year. Voters in Perkins have said no for 18 years (with one exception in 2000 for 2.9 mills). So, our district has "lived" with that for 13 years. It has also found ways to increase revenue and save costs during that time (and many have criticized the board members for pursuing programs like open enrollment even though it covers about 7-8 mills in property tax dollars that didn't have to be asked for). Being a board member is a thankless and difficult job with the decisions that must be made.
It would be greatly appreciated if workable solutions were presented to the board that would result in maintaining a district above state minimum requirements and help solve the aging facility issues.

arnmcrmn

You wanted cuts.....and they came.....now dont gripe about the outcome of increased fees.

fifteenthgreen

Sad days for our community. Need more industry!

Brick Hamland

IS it possible to watch the meeting in its entirity on one feed anywhere?

fifteenthgreen

Hope so. The Register has been good with their coverage.

fifteenthgreen

What is the actual breakdown on monthly costs should the levy pass?

character counts

and these numbers should mean what to me? Do you think this will change my mind? Without education you have nothing. I can make sacrifices in order for my child to have a quality well rounded education. Thanks for the information...My vote is still YES! PERKINS STUDENTS I THINK YOU ARE WORTH IT!!!!

fifteenthgreen

Just want to know if they're true or not. Thanks.

character counts

I live at home? Yea... that comment has everything to do with the levy. I missed that...was that information you looked up on the internet, or are you just using the blog to spout off and hear yourself talk again?

fifteenthgreen

Stay the course!

character counts

Oh you liked that quote...maybe I should change the name of that quote from Charlie Brown to "fifteenthgreen" because someone hit your repeat button way too many times!!!

fifteenthgreen

Keep at it!

character counts

hook, line, and sinker....you are excellent at baiting negative attention to come your way! I'll continue talking to you when demeanor has changed. Until then...I'll treat you like any other child wanting negative attention...IGNORE the negative....FOCUS on the positive!

character counts

You seem to know so much about the problems. Can you offer any solutions that carry validity?

fifteenthgreen

Need more facts, please!

Bherrle

Will provide as I get comfortable with them.

fifteenthgreen

Please keep the facts and information coming for voter assessment! Thank you!

Bherrle

It appears you already changed the error that I spotted.

Bherrle

The laptop fees - you had it listed as 2.5 million a while ago, appears you have it corrected.

I would also state that the $1.7M in stadium costs is correct, however it is not an anuual expense. That was a one time expense. I would add that it was money very well spent, in my opinion. Perhaps a short term hurt, but long term it was the right decision.

On the others, I don't know enough yet to comment on them.

fifteenthgreen

Ok. Thanks. Please keep everyone informed as you find out exact figures. I'll do the same.

character counts

Oh fifteenthgreen... Back again so soon. Looks like you copy and pasted someone else's findings and still are only listing problems. Make this more interesting to read and copy and paste a solution.

VOTENO

I heard Gunner and the board have talking points and have people posting on here. Seems to be true.

Pirate Mom

The points made here that don't jive with your position do not necessarily come from ignorant followers of Gunner, teachers, etc. They are our opinions formed by attending meetings, going into the schools to see for ourselves, and fact finding. We have our rights to give pro-levy information the same way you have your right to post your position. We are not going away; we've just decided to become more vocal to support our schools. Vote yes on August 6.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Pirate Mom

The points made here that don't jive with your position do not necessarily come from ignorant followers of Gunner, teachers, etc. They are our opinions formed by attending meetings, going into the schools to see for ourselves, and fact finding. We have our rights to give pro-levy information the same way you have your right to post your position. We are not going away; we've just decided to become more vocal to support our schools. Vote yes on August 6.

TellTheTruth

Having read 264 blogs both pro and con, I may be wasting my time commenting in response to contributors who equate a negative response with being nonsupportive of our students. This is an illogical conclusion. I don't feel obligated to contribute an additional 6.73 mills, when the BOE and Gunner continually ignore the voters' answer "NO" to levies proposed. And, yes, I am aware of the issues and have attended a board meeting and expressed my opposition to moving inside millage to permit a building project, necessitating an operational levy as predicted. This superintendent and board have dug a deep hole from which the district may never recover and in the process divided a previously united township by their presumptuous decisions to satisfy their own egos. Many of the supporters and none of the administrators have seen the impact of the economic downturn and apparently are blind to the fact of lack of growth in this part of Ohio and the risk of even more losses of industry. Yet they accuse those of us who believe in a more conservative approach than building new facilities of not being supportive of students. We cannot afford to approve this levy and hope to elect a board independent of Mr. Gunner (who is a loose canon) at a later date. So don't paint me as purely emotional in my decision to again vote no in August. Jerking us around by now charging $730 pay to play per sport is a ploy which I believe will backfire and have unintended consequences.

Gunner, take a major cut in your salary, take away your travel allowance, remove the position of communications director, and get back to having your teachers teach instead of relying on computers to do their job, and I might reconsider my position. Your report card is not something to brag about.

bobshumway92

The yes posters on here are teachers, staff (government workers) or their spouses are. They don't care about any economic downturns. It doesn't affect them.

Bherrle

Incorrect Bob. I'm not a teacher or employeed by the district or government in any way. Neither is my wife.

Believe me, I care about economic downturn. I earn about 60% of what I earned 6 years ago. I support the levy, voted for it May, and as of now, will vote yes in August.

Got anything else you want to say?

Pirate Mom

The points made here that don't jive with your position do not necessarily come from ignorant followers of Gunner, teachers, etc. They are our opinions formed by attending meetings, going into the schools to see for ourselves, and fact finding. We have our rights to give pro-levy information the same way you have your right to post your position. We are not going away; we've just decided to become more vocal to support our schools. Vote yes on August 6.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points

Pirate Mom

The points made here that don't jive with your position do not necessarily come from ignorant followers of Gunner, teachers, etc. They are our opinions formed by attending meetings, going into the schools to see for ourselves, and fact finding. We have our rights to give pro-levy information the same way you have your right to post your position. We are not going away; we've just decided to become more vocal to support our schools. Vote yes on August 6.

fifteenthgreen

It will all work out in the end!

lifetimeresident

Still havent got an answer on Mr. Kustic. Did he retire or not.

Pirate Mom

Mr. Kustec has not retired.

observer

If I hear one more time, "you're hurting the students" I'm gonna throw up! Mr. Gunner and the BOE are the ones "hurting the students" if they are being hurt at all. Frankly, I think if Gunner cares so much about the students he would take a pay cut, put the operating money back where it belongs, and then maybe the people in Perkins will pass a levy. Don't tell me I don't care about the kids when the BOE punishes the kids to get their way!

Cindi Davidson

Okay, I attended the meeting and I will say Mr. Gunner is a very smart man but also is a bully. I watched and listened to many people ask questions and Mr. Gunner constantly piped up and said "I will answer that question" while the board just sat there and let him take control. It is a shame that the pay to play fees don't effect any of the board members because you have board members that are doctors and can afford to pay the $730.00 to play. It is hurting the folks that really can't afford this kind of money. Also you will find at Perkins that if you have enough cash and you are a favorite your kids play anyway while the kids that don't have cash rolling out of their pockets and are not the "favs" sit the bench. And I do agree that this really is just another way that Gunner is bullying people into passing the levy!

Bherrle

Pirate10,

I won't comment on the perception of him being a bully at this time, I didn't spend enough time observing Supt. Gunner to pick up on anything.

I'd like to provide a perspective on the comment "It is a shame that the pay to play fees don't effect any of the board members because you have board members that are doctors and can afford to pay the $730.00 to play."

I don't feel that is a fair statement, and would ask you to reconsider. They are imposing those fees on themselves. The fact that they earn whatever they earn is not something they should have to apologize for. They did the work and dedicated themselves to becoming doctors, or whatever position they hold.

Also consider that they, on average, most likely own property above the average value of the common citizen, so they, in asking for these levies, have been and continue to be willing to impose upon themselves higher taxes than they are on most of the citizens.

fifteenthgreen

Too much damage has been done by those committing "political suicide". I really believe the community will reunite with the same immense amount of pride that once existed in Perkins Schools and is showing up via this passionate, yet sometimes colorful, blog. Everyone cares or they wouldn't be on here voicing their opinion and sharing their knowledge and ideas. Unfortunately, the wrong vote comes first for the schools, teachers and students. Once changes are made with the removal of those that actually have committed the "political suicide", I personally think the citizens will regain the necessary trust and back the schools wholeheartedly. I don't necessarily believe that by removing members from any school board you're really going to change a flawed, funding system, but as with any political position, corporation, board or coaching job, results, trust and confidence are vital for survival. Sadly, for this Superintendent and Board of Education, they have lost all of the above with many of the voters for one reason or another. Unfortunately, for them, the citizens of Perkins Township have spoken loudly and are demanding the obvious. They simply must go!

44870 South

We are voting NO. This whole thing is down right embarrassing and wrong.

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