School board cuts $2 million from budget

Sports and extracurricular activities dominated discussions Wednesday evening as Perkins Schools leaders agreed to hike pay-to-participate fees and eliminate 15 staff members.
Alissa Widman Neese
Jun 13, 2013

 

The topic was fitting for the packed Perkins High School auditorium, where more than 200 people cheered on their side of a contentious levy debate with applause and praise.

Reductions approved Wednesday totaled about $2 million, a result of a failed May levy and state funding cuts, board members said.

Pay-to-participate fees for high school students increased to $730 per sport for the upcoming school year, up from $150 approved in April. Costs for dual enrollment classes, clubs and music activities also increased substantially for high school and middle school students.

“I don’t approve of this, and I don’t think you guys understand,” a mother shouted from the back of the crowded auditorium. “I want my son’s senior year to be a good one, not ‘mom and dad couldn’t pay for me to play my sports.’”

Board president Matt Koisor told parents no board members think the cuts are a good idea, however, they do recognize their necessity.

“Unfortunately we only have a certain amount of money to balance our budget,” Koisor said. “None of these cuts are cuts we want to make.”

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If township voters approve the district’s August levy, the reductions could be reversed and pay-to-participate fees will return to normal, superintendent Jim Gunner said. The district is proposing a 10-year, 6.73-mill levy, nearly 2 mills larger than its May proposal.

Before Wednesday’s cuts, Perkins Schools was projecting a $2.3 million deficit for the upcoming school year, with a budget of about $21 million, according to its most recent five-year financial forecast. It was set to spend all its reserve cash by 2015.

In early April, board members approved two rounds of permanent cuts totaling $12 million for the next four years. 

In addition to sports fees, several parents also voiced concerns Wednesday about cuts to music and art programming.

Conversation was calm, but tense, until parent Jason Dulaney commanded attention with an objective perspective. He criticized the board’s ineffective communication strategies, but also reprimanded voters for going to the polls without proper knowledge of the issues.

An angry “no” vote doesn’t punish board members or administrators — it only punishes students, said Dulaney, a levy supporter.

“I don’t want you to vote ‘yes’ and I don’t want you to vote ‘no,’” he said. “I just want you to vote informed.”

Levy committee members, many district parents, remained in the auditorium after the meeting to recruit supporters for their cause. They will kick off their campaign with a meeting 7 p.m. Monday in the Perkins High School cafeteria.

Township voters haven’t approved an emergency operating levy for the district since 2000.

Perkins Schools cuts approved

•Furry Elementary School: 3 teachers (art, music, physical education)
•Meadowlawn Intermediate School: 5 teachers (art, music, computer, gifted, physical education)
•Briar Middle School: 2 teachers (computer, music), 1 guidance counselor
•Perkins High School: 2 teachers (health, Chinese)
•District Office: 1 communications director, 1 EMIS secretary, full pay-to-participate fees

TOTAL SAVINGS: About $2 million for upcoming school year

Pay-to-participate fee amounts approved

•High school athletics: $730 per sport
•High school extracurricular clubs: $150 per club
•High school band or choir: $220 per music participation
•Middle school athletics: $185 per sport
•Middle school clubs: $150 per club
•High school dual enrollment classes: $300 per class per semester

Comments

underthebridge

That is not how the schools in Ohio are rated. In Ohio, schools are ranked from lowest to highest: Academic Emergency, Continuous Improvement, Effective, Excellent, Excellent with Distinction.

Tribester

The open enrollment "scheme" as you call it saved this district from having a operating levy FIVE years ago. If open enrollment is so bad, why does EVERY other district in the area participate in it? I guess they all like to "lose" money too. It is also illegal to charge open enrolled students extra to "make up the difference" You would know that if you were informed, but clearly you are not For your information!

Foryourinformation

Tribester: For Your Information, along with "yesshedid," as a business owner and a mother of 4, I am more informed than you can imagine and not worried about what people enrolled in other districts do, but it is my property taxes from my business that I own that are paying for others who don't live in the community in which they send their kids to school. So, you "clearly inform yourself on that!" I own a home and condo in Sandusky, my husband and I choose to send our kids to the Sandusky City Schools in which I got a "great" education and graduated from, and my business is very successful in Perkins. Yes...I support 2 communities and 2 school districts and proud of it! I am prepared for someone to say I don't have a voice because I live in Sandusky and my kids attend another district, but I can speak loud and proud because my business pay a hefty amount of taxes which goes to the Perkins School District and I am proud of that as well. Therefore; with that being said and with a bachelors and 2 masters degrees, I am well "informed", well equiped with knowledge of policies and laws, and well educated to say what I want to say and speak on behalf of any community of people that I see is being wronged and I pay my taxes to (whether business or property). Perkins do NOT have to accept all of the open enrolled children that DO NOT live in the district, just like Sandusky doesn't and no other district. So get informed on that! Open enrollment is an option and NOT required by Ohio law. If Gunner and the Board saw that open enrollment was causing financial hardship for the students and families who live and work in the community, why would he continue to "make the students suffer" knowing that it was going to come to this with increasing fees, RIFFing staff, cutting programs, etc. They can put a limit on how many students they accept...that is in their control and has nothing to do with providing a "free and fair" education, but everything to do with open enrollment. I can provide you with some information and websites on open enrollment if you'd like. As a tax paying business owner in Perkins and with my taxing paying dollars from my business going to the Perkins schools (which it should), again...why don't you inform yourself instead of you spewing out clearly misinformation. "Please and thank you"!

Strong Schools ...

For Your Information,

Open enrollment has brought in about 2.5 million dollars to our district. This has kept us off the ballot for the past five years. The state keeps cutting our funding along with other districts. The cuts from the state have put us where we are today.

I agree with you that Sandusky has some amazing teachers. But the Perkins teachers and administrators do not go out and solicit people to come to our district. 500 students come to our district at their own choice. There is still a waiting list for children to come to Perkins. There is a reason people want to come to Perkins. Our teachers and district offer great opportunities that are not offered elsewhere. That is what makes Perkins unique!

Strong Schools ...

I agree with you Tribester! Open enrollment kept us off the ballot for five years. There is a reason why we have 500 + students enrolling in Perkins. We offer amazing programs and opportunities. And all of my children's teachers have been amazing!

Keep up the great work positive bloggers!

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

fifteenthgreen

Free $1 million plus laptops!

Bherrle

And we want to accuse the board of blackmail, and being in it for themselves? Wow.

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

fifteenthgreen

Good point.

Bherrle

The statement "He unethically (but legally) moved operating money into a building fund" is an opinion, not a fact. The word "unethically" is opinion, without facts to support it. Please tell me more about this issue, I know no real facts about it, and I need to be better informed. You may be right, I'm not trying to convince you of anything. I'd like to better understand what was done, and why you feel it was unethical.

- Brad Herrle

fifteenthgreen

Keep doing your homework, Herrle and let us know. Thanks

Bherrle

I am doing my homework, that's why I am asking questions.

fifteenthgreen

Got it!

Ibelieve2

The cuts were not mentioned because they were not needed at the time. The recent cut of 2 million dollars from the state was just recently made.

fifteenthgreen

Free $1 million plus laptops!

Ibelieve2

The cuts were not mentioned because they were not needed at the time. The recent cut of 2 million dollars from the state was just recently made.

Wald

Gunner wanted a new building. The public voted no. He then took taxpayer money earmarked for operating expenses and moved it to a permanent improvement fund to build his new school anyway and spent $1.7 million of that towards a new stadium. When taxpayers vote to have money spent one way, then it is taken and used towards something that the taxpayers voted no on, it's unethical. And that's not an opinion, it's a fact.

UgtaBkdnMe

You have praised Mr. Fox so many times, would not admit he acted in an unethical manner, and actually defended Mr. Fox. Having an affair during his scheduled work hours wasn't unethical, using school email to conduct his affair wasn't unethical, accepting free golf (which is documented in school email) wasn't unethical (Mr. Lally testified under oath that free golf was addressed at a conference just days before his infamous July 2010 trip), bullying his "underlings" wasn't unethical, approving mileage for your buddy at 400+ miles a month after giving him a district vehicle to use was not unethical, and using tax payer money to cover costs of a trip to AZ that were not allowable was not unethical. But you think moving money from one account to another account is unethical? I don't agree with it either but it doesn't break Ohio Ethics laws. I'm glad to see that your opinions are facts. Wonder what a neutral referee would say about your superintendent?

Wald

I'm not saying Gunner did anything to be fired for. I'm saying I won't vote yes to a building levy so he can frivolously spend my money. Fox made mistakes but the state of Ohio ruled that he was fired over personal vendettas. And what Gunner did with moving the money isn't my opinion, it is a fact. If that doesn't fit the definition of unethical, nothing does. I would take Fox as the super of Perkins in a heartbeat.

UgtaBkdnMe

He should be looking for a job so maybe you'll get your wish...lol

Wald

He won't need a job after he's done suing Huron. Lol

citizen

You are correct. The term "unethically" was an opinion, but everything else in my comment was a fact.

Mr. Gunner and Board twice went to taxpayers asking them to pass a tax increase to build a brand new Perkins Schools campus and later changed it to new high school building. They billed it was "once in a lifetime opportunity" (yet here we are again 1 year later). Gunner and Board threatened that the high school was unsafe and posed an immediate danger to students and staff. This claim was proven false by a government inspector report. (As you'll notice, there is little talk any longer about how unsafe or what danger the building is, as the county building inspector has publicly reported those claims are false).

Taxpayer overwhelmingly rejected twice Gunner's plan to build a new campus and/or new high school.

Instead of accepting the taxpayer's decision and focusing on providing a solid education for the district's students (as Perkins had been noted for) Gunner and the Board deemed it more important to build a new high school building. Gunner and the Board chose to go ahead with building a new high school campus, against the taxpayer vote.

In order to do this, Gunner and Board had to remove money from operating funds and reallocate it to a building fund. That money was approved by taxpayer to educate students, pay faculty and staff, provided textbooks and technology as well as arts/athletics/music. Gunner and Board thought it more important to build a new high school campus, than actually provide an education to district students. Additionally, they took out a $3M loan from Citizens Bank to design and plan the new high school.

Gunner is now coming out with all these wild and crazy cuts, threats and stating he will have to "dismantle the district" unless voters pass this operating levy. This is a building levy. Perkins has the money for operations if Gunner would not have stolen this from the students and faculty.

Bherrle

Thank you for the information.

Be Positive-Vote Yes

This is No Longer a building levy and everyone in this community needs to understand this. The decisions in the past have been made and that was NOT expecting the additional 2 million dollars in cuts that have been made after that decision. Had the 2million dollar cut been known, I'm sure the move never would've been made. Right now this current levy is just trying to cover the addition 2 million dollars that have been cut by the state. The buildings are being totally put on hold until Perkins can become financially stable and at least get the programs back that students deserve and stop eliminating more teacher positions.

Even if you are still upset about the millage move, again, don't vote against the students in August, vote against the board in November when you have that opportunity.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

VOTENO

.

Nemesis

No, it's fact. They floated a bond issue twice to pay for new buildings, and the voters said no both times. So then they shifted inside millage to the building fund from the operating budget, and floated a levy to replace the funds moved. That's not ethical. They did an end run around the clearly expressed will of the voters to whom they are properly subordinate.

Be Positive-Vote Yes

This is No Longer a building levy and everyone in this community needs to understand this. The decisions in the past have been made and that was NOT expecting the additional 2 million dollars in cuts that have been made after that decision. Had the 2million dollar cut been known, I'm sure the move never would've been made. Right now this current levy is just trying to cover the addition 2 million dollars that have been cut by the state. The buildings are being totally put on hold until Perkins can become financially stable and at least get the programs back that students deserve and stop eliminating more teacher positions.

Even if you are still upset about the millage move, again, don't vote against the students in August, vote against the board in November when you have that opportunity.

Strong Schools ...

This is not a building levy. We are trying to keep our programs from getting cut. The programs will be cut, not just the teachers. Our students need the programs to excel, build confidence, receive scholarships, and to build resources for a successful future.

Nemesis

EVERY LEVY will be a building levy until the funds stolen from the operating budget for the building fund are returned. Once that's done, if there is STILL an operating shortfall, then they can float a REAL operating levy to cover JUST that shortfall.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Pirate Mama

I am voting yes in August! I want my children to have art, PE, and music taught by specialists. I also want to maintain the technology classes! I am on a tight budget, but will make the sacrifice to pay for the new taxes. I support the BOE and Gunner. I don't care where he lives, he is still paying taxes!
VOTING YES!!!

DLK

Your children WILL have these specials classes, they will just be taught by in-house teachers rather than specials teachers. Don't drink the kool-aid!

Be Positive-Vote Yes

DLK- Do you understand that if these specials programs are eliminated they are considering going to a shortened school day, and if that is the case, I don't know how you expect teachers to teach to the high demands of state standards in science, math, language arts, and social studies, and be able to tack on music, art, PE, computer, and foreign language. Let's seriously be realistic here. IT'S IMPOSSIBLE. That's why we have specials teachers, so that they can give children the full experience and time they deserve.

VOTENO

.

Strong Schools ...

Are you going to drive the K-8 students to their class? Use your head...EHOVE is a 9-12 facility that offers adult education. The classes they offer on the weekends do not align with the common core/state standards.

Strong Schools ...

Oh my....You really think a classroom teacher can effectively teach art, music, computer, and physical education? Our specials teachers are certified in their own specific are and do a great job. My children love their specials teachers! We are not drinking Kool-Aid. We are just simply supporting our programs and teachers.

Nemesis

NONE of those certifications are based on strong subject matter background anyway.

In any event, the funds to pay for the specials are sitting in the building fund. They don't need a levy, they just need to return what they stole.

Tsu Dho Nimh

That is not a true statement. The Department of Education has criteria in order for a teacher to be licensed in any of these areas. Just like math, social studies, language arts and other subject areas, specials have content requirements. Please check with ODE before making such statements.

Vote4Perkins

Hhhmmmm? I wonder if all the teachers can read music? Good luck with that.

Be Positive-Vote Yes

Right here with ya mama! Voting Yes!

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Bherrle

There are a lot of comments on here without names. If your willing to put it on a public chat forum, then you should be willing to put your name to it. My name is Brad Herrle, I spoke at last night's board meeting. While I don't necessarily agree with the specifics of the cuts made last night, I support the levy. I need to do more research and educate myself. My family has lived here for two years, having relocated from South Central PA. I have two daughters in the district, one will be a Junior, and one going into 5th grade. From an "outsiders" perspective, it is a privilege to live in this district, whether you have children still in school or not. It is a huge value, even with the levy increase if it passes. In other states (such as PA), tax rates to support the schools are raised without consent of the voters on a ballot. Before I say anything else, can an "informed" person answer these questions? What do Perkins Township residents pay (millage rates) compared to other districts in our area, and statewide? How do home values in Perkins compare to other districts? How do Perkins Schools academic & athletic results compare locally and statewide? Why is Supt. Gunner and the board members so disliked, at least on this forum? What am I missing, what don't I know? I'd be glad to meet with anyone face to face to get better educated on your point of view.

Strong Schools ...

Hi Brad,

I have copy and pasted your questions on the Perkins Local Schools website. You can go to the website and check the answers. I just want to make sure you get all of the facts you want.

I do know some of the answers for you:

The state average on property taxes is 35 mills. Perkins is at 21.6 mills, which means we are 14 mills less than the state average.

Our studets can compete with anyone. Our district produces amazing athletes. Our football team won the SBC (Sandusky Bay Conference). We finished sixth and reached the state playoffs. The Lady Golf Team won the state championship this year. Our marching band set a record for being qualified for state competition 33 years in a row. We have 156 members in our band. Girls tennis took second, girls cross country took second, girls volleyball took third, boys soccer took third, and boys golf took third.

We have a lot of students who get scholarships for their academic achievements. Our district partners with NASA, BGSU, and many other organizations throughout the state. These oppportunities put our students above the rest.

Gunner and the board truly do think about the students first! They have been very creative in keeping us off of the ballot for the past five years, such as, open enrollment, grants, partnerships, etc. There are people in our community that think they can do things better but never step up the the plate.
I know Dr. Gunner or one of the board members would be happy to speak with you. All you have to do is call the board office and make an appointment. They would be happy to sit with you. Thank you for attending the board meeting and trying to get factual information! At least you are trying to be responsible and thank you for supporting our students!

Nemesis

The fourth highest millage and per pupil spending district in the state produces some of the least educated students in the state. It's not about how much you spend, and kids who achieve in high spending schools will achieve in low spending schools, because it's what happens at home that drives that.

"Gunner and the board truly do think about the students first!"

No, if they did, they wouldn't have stolen instructional funds to fuel their edifice complex. They care about getting their names on a cornerstone. Gunner cares about padding his resume with a major building project.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Nemesis

Brad, your identity adds no weight to your words. Either what you say is valid based on factual support or it isn't.

fifteenthgreen

Where's the sign?

underthebridge

I suspect the BOE believes the sign is "marketing" their plans to the community.

fifteenthgreen

Of course. But I thought they weren't building a new school!!!!!!!

8ballinthesidepocket

This is all the result of the disappearance of the once vibrant industrial base in the county and state. If we cannot attract manufacturing or technology companies back to this area, there will NOT be money for the schools or anything else for that matter. Despite what Obuma says, you cannot just keep printing money to pay the bills. Look at Cleveland and Detroit...we were next.

Bherrle

Spot on "8 ball".

fifteenthgreen

Definitely need more industry. The landscape has drastically changed over the years.

Bherrle

I agree with "8 Ball's" assessment of the big picture view, that there are factors outside of anyone within Perkins SD or boards control. The County, State, and our countries economy are factors that have led to a deteriorating tax base, which is not the only factor, but it is an important one.

That agreement does not mean that I agree with how money was spent, or moved around. I don't have an opinion on that yet, I'm still educating myself. I've come to the party late, so I have some catching up to do.

fifteenthgreen

Once educated as to the real truth be a leader and speak out and ask all the hard questions at an open forum. If you don't like the answer, counter it and make them comply. They work for us! If you don't like what you see and find out, speak your mind and it may gain you a seat if desired. We need strength before we can move forward.

Bherrle

I will.

VOTENO

.

local man

Please inform me as a voter to the following logic below
High school athletics: $730 per sport
•High school extracurricular clubs: $150 per club
•High school band or choir: $220 per music participation
•Middle school athletics: $185 per sport
•Middle school clubs: $150 per club
•High school dual enrollment classes: $300 per class per semester

Why do kids who play in the band or sing have to pay? Fundraisers by those kids could take care of any additional costs associated with their activities.

Clubs which meet during school hours should have no additional expense, the teachers are already expected in the building during those hours - they shouldn't be paid more during those hours.

Makes alot of sense to screw the gifted program, let them underperform by being mixed in with the less gifted student.

fifteenthgreen

Hopefully they will pull back if the levy is defeated.

Ibelieve2

I believe the additional costs would cover traveling expenses as the band attends games and participates in other activities. It would also cover the cost of paying a band director for time outside of the school day.

sash

Fund raising has paid for nearly all the expenses associated with the music programs for years already because of previous budget cuts. The new participation fees will be used to offset salary costs for the remaining music teachers.

MrGadfly

This is about a new school building.

This new building will be the legacy of the present school board and the superintendent.

This levy must pass now or the makeup of the present school board my be changed and the employment of this superintendent may change.

All attempts to intimidate voters will be used. If this levy doesn't pass those in charge maybe replaced.

Are you strong enough to see past the smoke and mirrors? Are you strong enough to stand up to the threats against our children?

You have told the school board twice the new academy school is not viable at this time. They are not listening. They have taken on an additional burden of over $3 million dollars on plans for a school after you have told them "NO". They have manipulated millage to take away your vote on this new school and any other building in the future.

Do you really trust these people?

These individuals have caused the loss of teachers and programs with their overzealous desire to build their legacy. They are threatening more cuts and reduction of services for our kids to get "their building".

Are you strong enough to say "NO" again? Are you strong enough to then replace school board members and the superintendent? After these changes we can then right the school, bring back teachers and programs.

Are you strong enough to stay the course?

VOTENO

.

Ibelieve2

This would be a good question to ask on the district's website www.perkinsschools.org

Strong Schools ...

We are strong enough to stand up for our children and try to provide a quality education.

We have had many superintendents that have ignored the issues of the district. Gunner did the opposite! He came to our district and noticed a need for our students. He has the best interest of the students and for our commnity in the future.

The majority of the community memners voted the school board members into office because we do trust they will make the best decisions. They don't do what is popular, but they do what is right!

We need ot stay strong for the students and not punish them. Take it out on the board when they are on the ballot in November!

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

fifteenthgreen

$3,000,000 new school design "loan".
$1,700,000 district contribution/match to the new stadium
$2,000,000 being moved annually from operating to PI to build a school.
Are these figures accurate/true?

DLK

Not to mention there is over $2 million being moved annually from operating to PI to build a school.

This money could go a long way saving jobs and programs.

DLK

Since everyone is asking for informative posts and proof of facts:

The Perkins 5-year forecast and the assumptions states, "In November 2011,the Board of Education moved the inside millage, 5.2 mills, to the permanent improvement fund. The movement will decrease property tax revenue in the operating/general fund by approximately by 2.3 million per year. This forecast represent the movement of the inside millage. This movement also places residential property below the 20 mill floor which will require a roll up to re‐establish the district at the 20 mill floor.

ftp://ftp.ode.state.oh.us/geodoc...

For those of you who don't understand what they mean by a "roll up" to the 20 mill floor, MOVING INSIDE MILLAGE IS AN UNVOTED TAX INCREASE! Your taxes will go up regardless!

AND they are asking for MORE to replace what they stole! VOTE NO!

Move the money back to balance the budget and save jobs!

Strong Schools ...

The district would still need to go back on the ballot even if they did move back the inside millage. The state has cut over two million dollars from our budget. The district has no ontrol over this and there will probably be more cuts made from the state.

Things are constantly changing because of the decisions at the state level.

Support our students and Vote Yes

Nemesis

Fine, move the millage back and prove it first.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Thomas Paine

I went to the meeting to get informed. I hope others do as well and don't just post on here. I don't like Gunner or some of the Board members or some of the directions they have taken the school, but I left the meeting with a different opinion then what I came in with. BooBeeDoo the answer to your question about why you should pay for someone else's kids sports is because someone else did so your kids could play when they were in school, and someone paid for you when you were in school. Also I am not retired, why am I paying Social Security and Medicare- because I get value in the future. The numbers that stood out for me at the meeting- Perkins SD has the lowest millage of any school in Erie County, They are roughly 7 mills behind the next lowest school, A levy has not passed in 13 years. Costs have gone up- some because of Board decisions(I still have an issue with the millage move- but what is done is done), others not their fault. The county property tax values have gone down as well. State funding has been reduced. The school has been running at a deficit for roughly 7 years. In roughly 2 years the school will be in a fiscal emergency and the State will come in. Do I want to pay more taxes- no I don't, but after getting the numbers last night, and understanding some of the facts, I will vote yes. Not as a support of the administration- I will vote for new board members in November. My yes vote will be for the community. This vote is important, do we think about ourselves or do we think about the community as a whole and create future value. All I ask is people do research and be informed. School finance is not easy to understand and you might find the facts are different than your perception, like I did.

DLK

Don't drink the kool-aid, Buddy!

Bherrle

Very well said T. Paine. One can vote for the levy, and then vote against the board if they choose. Using the levy vote to pass judgement on the board doesn't hurt the board at all.

Finn Finn

Your wide-eyed innocent, "gee, I don't know everything yet, I'm educating myself" schtick is looking foolish. Clearly you are a levy supporter. Every one of your comments encourages levy passage. Your subtlety ain't that subtle.

Bherrle

Not trying to subtle Finn. In my very first post I stated I supported the levy. But I hope insulting me made you feel better. Funny how I was willing to put my name right out there. What is yours?

Finn Finn

Insult? You need to toughen up.

Bherrle

LOL - OK.

Finn Finn

^_^

Nemesis

Bherrie, levies are almost never reduced or removed, and this one is not necessary absent the unethical actions of this board. The one thing voters have to send a message is the power of the purse strings.

Strong Schools ...

Well said, Thomas Paine. Thank you for coming to get informed and taking responsibility. Thank you for your supporting our students!

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Thomas Paine

Mr Gadfly- if the school as an income problem, getting rid of the current board and supt doesn't solve the income issue. Its still exists. I too would love to see most of the board go along with the supt. But the next administration is going to need money to operate too. There isn't much more the schools can cut after this round before the state comes in. The numbers at last nights meeting prove that. I have to look past this boards PR problems and start by fixing the money issue- and then in November fixing the board and leadership issue. Who is going to actually step up and run for a board position? Who do you replace them with that is qualified? Lots of talk on this board and in the community but I don't see a line for names on the ballot.

fifteenthgreen

Thanks for the info.

MrGadfly

Thomas,

If you don't trust people handling the money do you hand them more? First things first. No levy can be passed until people trusted by the community are running the show. This levy has to fail to clean away the fog instituted by the present regimen.

Nemesis

Almost no school district in Ohio has an income problem. They all have a spending problem.

Look at historical per pupil spending numbers - they've all increased faster than inflation for decades.

DLK

Hey people in Facebook land....stop using social media to promote a levy when you don't live in the district and pay taxes. Don't tell me how to vote or how this is "for the kids".

I'm sorry you or someone you know work at the school with such financial mismanagement. This is not our fault. Talk to your boss about the mess you are in.

Be Positive-Vote Yes

DLK- How is this not for the kids??? Are you telling me that eliminating programs and positions in art, music, phys.ed, computer, gifted, and foreign language programs, as well as eliminating guidance counselors is not affecting children? I am devastated for these children that they will not have these programs to participate in and will not have the opportunity to receive a well rounded education without them. It saddens me to see people post comments about "scare tactics" when in reality the issue at hand may be extremely scary, but to tell you the truth people, they are REAL! The programs and positions are ALREADY GONE. It's up to you in August to bring them back!

VOTENO

.

Strong Schools ...

Get a new line...will ya!

Wald

If you want your programs back, tell your BOE to move the PI money that was stolen back into the operating funds . Simple as that.

Bherrle

How was the money stolen? Are charges being filed?

UgtaBkdnMe

Good question, Bherrle.

Wald

It was money taken without the consent of the voters to be used for a new building. It's like if you gave me money to buy you groceries and pay your bills and I took that money and gave myself a vacation to Hawaii. Call it want you want, but it is what it is.

Dudley Do-Right

Agree with you Wald ... call it what you want, but it is what it is .... As a taxpayer in Huron, I don't appreciate that Fred Fox had an affair during working hours. I don't care about an affair, that is between he and his wife ... but not on taxpayer's time and money. I don't like that Fred Fox took vacation days in Arizona on taxpayer's money. He went to Arizona for a conference which relates to his job ... not really since the conference was designed for districts intrenched in the Effective Schools initiative and Huron is not ..... but went several days early and the Huron taxpayer paid for those days. He didn't take vacation days, the taxpayer paid for the hotel and rental car, and his wife went with him. Oh I know he paid back the rental car charges, after he got caught, and he paid for the plane ticket. This is like your example ... you bought groceries, didn't pay the bills, and went to California instead of Hawaii.

UgtaBkdnMe

Come on, Dudley. Can't you wrap your head around it? It's two completely different situations (please note sarcasm). Wald and Nemesis will be glad to explain it to you.

Tsu Dho Nimh

Dudley...I could not agree more with your post. As I read through the hundreds of posts, I remember Wald's comments on the Huron articles. Have to admit, I do find his comments here entertaining to say the least. He will not agree that Mr. Fox stole money, but can easily see where Mr. Gunner did. In my opinion, what Mr. Gunner did would not sit well with me but from what I am reading, the board approved it and it did not violate any laws. Looks as if he violated the trust of the taxpayers.

Strong Schools ...

Stolen??? Everything was public record at the board meetings. It's not the boards fault if only six people show up. Wald, did you attend the board meetings? Or, do you just listen to the misleading negative bloggers? Also, I would stop using the word "stolen". You are making yourself look bad.

Tsu Dho Nimh

LIKE!

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Perkins0602

Blogging is also considered social media. Yes votes and No votes are both using social media.

DLK

Simple question all you supporters can answer for me....what has Perkins done all these years with their PI money? Why haven't they adequately maintained their facilities with this PI money?

Strong Schools ...

The PI money is spent on day-to-day repairs on all of the buildings. Also, it is spent on school buses, vans, trucks, lawn mowers, parking lots, etc. Our buildings are in horrible shape. I encourage you to get a tour of the buildings and you would be shocked at some of the findings. The janitors do a great job fixing the problems, but it is only for the short term. The problems get worse and more expensive as time goes on wihout a permanent fix. The district does not have the funds for a permanent fix.

Thomas Paine

DLK- I am a finance guy- I went to the meeting to get the numbers- did the research on how the numbers got there. There is NOTHING this board can do differently at this point. They royally screwed up with the millage move IMO. But 13 years of reduced income and increasing costs...its not difficult to figure out why the district is where it is. I am saying yes to the Levy and no to the majority of the board.

DLK

Any finance guy would tell you not to throw more money at the problem. This is mismanagement of our tax dollars and they will be held accountable.

Any finance guy could see if they move PI money back to operating, they would have a balanced budget and be able to operate as they always have.

Common Sense

DLK,
No new levies since 2000 due to the vast amount of money generated through open enrollment. Go to the board meeting and explain your views to fully understand the picture. Otherwise, it looks like you are the one who drank the Kool-Aid.

Common Sense

DLK,
No new levies since 2000 due to the vast amount of money generated through open enrollment. Go to the board meeting and explain your views to fully understand the picture. Otherwise, it looks like you are the one who drank the Kool-Aid.

Strong Schools ...

DLK-The state has cut over 2 million dollars and they are still making cuts. We would be back on the ballot regardless! Moving the inside millage back is not the solution and it will not make our problems go away.

We have not passed a levy for new money in 13 years and we are trying to pay the bills on what we brought in 13 years ago. You do the math!

Support the students and vote yes!

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Be Positive-Vote Yes

I like the point that Mr. Paine brings up here and it is my hope the rest of the general public will take away the same message- VOTE YES to the Levy in support of the students in August, and if you wish to vote no to our board members for any poor decisions you think they may have made, vote so in November.

bobshumway92

Gunners talking points.

Nemesis

Then reverse the millage move and, at the very least, they'll drastically reduce the size of levy needed.

Thomas Paine

This is a sink or swim levy- EVERYONE has a right to be angry including those voting yes.

Thomas Paine

They have also royally screwed up PR and public goodwill.

Thomas Paine

To me this is a two part vote- the first part is getting the funding in place. The 2nd part is getting the proper board members to effectively lead the district. Some people disagree and think it should be the other way around. I just don't see how you are going to get people to run for the position when you tell them everyone is going to hate them and you have no money to effectively run the district.

fifteenthgreen

Will it really make a difference who is on the board? Need some strong, business minded individuals willing to stand up and if necessary, come to the voters/public for support against their own board.

Thomas Paine

Moving PI back isn't that simple with the state guidelines and regulations. It would help for about a year maybe two...then that money will be gone too.

Nemesis

and then there would be more support for a smaller levy. They moved it easily enough, they can move it back.

Move the millage back, admit that they overstepped their subordination to the voters, apologize, promise to never do it again, and then put up a smaller levy. It would pass with ease - nothing warms the hearts of voters like politicians with the humility to admit they were wrong.

Proud Pirate Mom

I can tell you - 6 years ago I moved from a declining town in Lorain County to Perkins. We as a family weighed the options of other schools/cities but had a a little flexibility with jobs, so without much hesitation chose Perkins for their academics, sports and COMMUNITY. I wanted to offer my kids the best and I felt I was doing so. I still do. I lived in a "poorer" area, I saw how it affected the schools and city. I knew what I was getting myself and family into by moving here. I am just like most, living on a tight budget, but I will find the money to support this levy. My kids will not suffer for the State or BOE decisions. So we don't go out to eat a few times - the landscaping may look a little less spruced. I will do whatever it takes. The cost of living rises everywhere, facts of life. Again, let's put our heads together to fix other issues ( board - or whatever you feel is the problem) but it sure isn't the kids. I will vote YES and help in any way to get others to as well.

Bherrle

Well stated Pirate Mom.

fifteenthgreen

Playing the "kiss the baby" role in politics. Look at both sides objectively. You have promise.

Bherrle

"Fifthtenth" - I'm a golfer too (I assume you are by the username.) Perhaps we can play a round together sometime and discuss face to face the issues. I'm not politicing at all. There is no place for politics in this issue, and I think that there is already way too much of it being brought in varying degrees by both sides of this issue.

I merely was commending her for stating her opinion in what I deemed a polite, well stated way. Politics is the last thing I am trying to accomplish. The way the public in general treats this board is way below the line. I wouldn't blame the entire board if it resigned right now. Good decisions or bad, they deserve to be treated with respect. I've seen people calling them "low-lifes", among other things. Really? I'm not saying you agree with that. But they are elected officials, and can be voted out if they are not liked. Insults and rhetoric accomplish nothing. I'd like to know how many people that are calling them names, questioning ethics, and are being negative on everything actually ran for or have served on the school board themselves? Are they willing to put themselves out there? There are ways to agree and disagree in a respectful manner. It starts with getting fully informed, which is what I am in the process of doing. I've already stated that I am for the levy. That doesn't mean I agree with all of the board members, or Supt. Gunner, and everything they do. And it doesn't mean I won't change my mind before August. But I'm not in that seat right now, they are as elected officials. They have to do what they feel is right in the present, and for the future, of the district. They don't have to do everything that those who voted for them think they should do. If the voters want that, then run for the board, sit in that seat, and take the heat. I myself will consider offering my services to the voters if I find that I feel strongly that one or more of the board needs to be replaced. I don't have that opinion as of now.

As far as objectivity - those opposed to the levy just haven't shown we much yet. I get that they are mad about the stadium. My opinion, the stadium was the right thing to do. I don't know enough yet about the allegations about the "unethical" movement of money within district accounts. What has been stated so far does not convince me that anything wrong was done. I understand some think it was unethical, that's fine to disagree. But voters don't get to decide how money is spent within state guidelines. Voters get to elect officials. I also think the voters of this district missed a huge opportunity in Nov 2010 when Federal Matching funds were available for the approx 2 mil increase being asked for then, and it was voted down. I would have voted yes, hands down, had we lived here, and the vote would have still failed, just by one less vote. I graduated HS in 1992. School is not the same as it was 20 years ago, and it will not be the same as it is now 20 years from now. We have to think forward. Does that mean a new building? Maybe, maybe not. I don't know yet.

Finn Finn

Hey Pirate Momma, many people gave up eating out a looong time ago. The landscaping has been at the bottom of the "must do" list for many people for years. Clearly, we don't all live as lavishly as you. Many are bare bones already, and another $25 a month is simply not doable.

Proud Pirate Mom

Sorry - but my childrens education is worth more than $25 a month - and no I don't live a "lavish" lifestyle - I just feel as a parent I need to do what I can for my kids future.

Finn Finn

Well guess what mama, you do what you "need to do" for your "kids future", and I'll do what I need to do for my future. Your kids will not turn out to be hobos if this levy doesn't pass. And your flip attitude about $25.00 a month is insulting to those who find another $25.00 monthly bill a true hardship.

Proud Pirate Mom

I will do what I need to do - stop blaming and face reality. Personally - I would rather pay $25 more a month than the fees ( with two children involved in many sports/activities etc) - easy math for me. If you have no kids in the system or future children, than you have that right to your opinion. I am not knocking you in the least bit. I just feel blaming the higher ups are not the solution. Prices increase everywhere. I don't want to pay more. I would rather my savings grow. But again, I moved here because I loved the school system and community. I want to offer my children the best - Again, I respect your decision, please respect mine. Thx.

fifteenthgreen

What are the dollar amounts?

Proud Pirate Mom

If I had a $400,000 home - I would hope I would be able to afford the taxes on it. I know it may be hard for some, the increase, but I am only stating my opinion and what I feel is important. The future of all the children and just trying to give them all the same opportunities.

Finn Finn

Of course you are entitled to your opinion. I just don't understand why you feel I should pay so you won't have to pay the extra fees for your two children "involved in many sports/activities, etc." I'm sure that IS easy math for you. It effects me a little differently. I just don't understand why you parents always feel that your kids are "entitled" to sports, activities, clubs, etc. that the school can no longer afford to pay for. If you want those things for your kids, then pay for them. Don't expect me to.

Bherrle

Finn - the school could afford to pay for it, if it's tax structure were in line. There have always been folks without children who pay taxes that go towards educating someone else's children. It's called civic responsibility. And by the way, every parent who has children playing sports already shells out a fair amount of money, before the "pay to play" structure. There is no "entitlement." Athletics and other special groups are a part of a childs education. I will pay out over $500 for my to-be junior daughter to be a cheerleader this year, without the "pay to play" structure. You can see how much more I will pay if the levy fails. But that is not my motivation. I disagree with the board on how it is structuring these cuts, but I respect that it is thier job to make those decisions, and I know it was agonizing. If I disagree strong enough, I'll vote one or more out, and/or I'll put my name on the ballot. Being 7 mills below the next closest school in the county is not fiscally sustainable. And thinking that facilities as old as our districts facilities are OK as they are is very short term thinking, in my opinion. Not approving increases for 13 years is just not being realistic as a resident.

Finn Finn

Don't lecture me on civic responsibility. With 35 years in the work force, I'm extremely responsible.

What's not realistic is expecting taxpayers to keep shelling out more and more so that Tommy's parents can afford to have Tommy play golf, basketball and baseball, and Mary can play cheerleader, tennis and volleyball. Seriously, you can't have everything. While athletics may be a small part of a child's education, the bigger and more important part is classwork, study, academics.

I see no problem with the pay to play structure. It's the only fair way for those who choose not to play sports.

Nemesis

Hey pirate mom, then send them to a private school. Nothing is as effective as putting them in an environment where all the students have parents willing to make those sacrifices.

Strong Schools ...

I agree Proud Mom! We need to prioritize and think about the students. It is all about priorities!!! All of you negative people think about that when you are talking on you iPhone and drinking your Starbucks coffee!

Finn Finn

Hardworking people, who have raised their kids already, have worked all their lives, are hoping to retire but can't because they can't put enough money away to do so with rising costs and taxes, are supposed to "prioritize" and put you and your coddled kids first; typical of the mom/dad/teacher mindset. You have got to be some of the most selfish, self-absorbed people on the planet. In your self-centered world, anyone who doesn't gladly hand over money to the schools so we can pay for every indulgence mom wants for her kids is considered negative. The only ones talking on their iPhones (while driving / tailgating) and drinking Starbucks are the "stay at home" (yeah, right) Moms, all on their husbands' dime. They can't see anyone else's plight because they are so focused on themselves.

pigeon farmer

I like the idea of holding the people who wanted New Departure to close and destroy the union accountable. We all know who they are. It is time they come foward and support the schools. The christian conservative union haters detroyed the jobs to support the Japanese economy. Now the children will pay the ulimate price. Makes you wonder what was really going on when they gathered at the gazebo downtown to pray or was it prey? Once a teabagger always a teabagger.

VOTENO

.

Strong Schools ...

That's intellegent!!! Punish a child for what their teacher drives. Half of the parts are made in the U.S. anyways. Okay Vote No...What is your next excuse? Again not factual and pointless informtion. My whole family are union workers and we think you are off your rocker with this post!

Thomas Paine

My idea of holding them accountable is voting them out- not effectively destroying the district and damaging the kids of the community in the process over a political point of view. There is a middle ground.

44870pt

I understand the classified employees union (OAPSE) made significant wage and benefit concessions in the contract most recently negotiated/approved with the Board. I understand the teacher's contract is currently under negotiation. Is it known if the teaching staff has offered to make/accept similar concessions? Has there been a recent, official, public statement from the teacher's union regarding negotiations?

fifteenthgreen

Not sure.

citizen

But according to Gunner, Perkins Schools is on the brink of not existing anymore and he will have to "dismantle the district!!"

Sad that Gunner and the Board want this new building so bad they will resort to lies, scare tactics and threats... and actually harm the students and school district in the process by making all of these massive cuts.

THESE MASSIVE CUTS WOULD NOT BE NEEDED IF GUNNER AND BOARD WOULD LISTEN TO TAXPAYERS AND MOVE OPERATING MONEY BACK TO OPERATING MONEY.

We don't want to pay for buildings and facilities when the current ones are newer than many in the area!

THIS IS A BUILDING LEVY! Vote no... again.

OH-IO

Haha! People made an exodus to Perkins schools in search of a so called better education and oppurtunities. It's so ironic that Sandusky High School now has an advanced program, uniforms and no fees to pay to participate. Sandusky toot your horn a bit. Love it.

OH-IO

Well the chickens have come home to rouse. I remember the mass exodus to Perkins because Sandusky High was so called unsatisfactory. How ironic that SHS has an advanced program, uniforms and no pay for participation fee. Sandusky toot your horn a bit. Love it.

Strong Schools ...

I think you should be proud of your district...just like we are proud of ours! Why don't you let the Perkins community handle this! You obviously don't live in our communtiy and pay our taxes. Your comments mean nothing on this blog!

RMyer

The BOE is also responsible for facility management both short term and long term. The p.i. funds generated by the 2 mills aren't not enough to pay for major renovations or new construction. Those p.i. funds have been used to maintain four buildings, parking lots, grounds, technology, etc. The high school is rated with one of the worst scores (92/100 with 100 being worst). Either renovation or new will be costly, but has to be done. The stadium expense was a one time expense and is not repeated going forward.

The Health Department inspection only verified that there wasn't an immediate danger of asbestos fibers, lead, etc. That inspection had nothing to do with infrastructure integrity or life span going forward or correcting issues that are not in compliance with current code (fire suppression system for example). Comparing the Health Dept. inspection to a building infrastructure inspection for renovation or new is comparing apples to oranges.

The district was on the hook for stadium repairs whether the community helped or not. The community asked the school to solicit private donations and it did. The athletic boosters also ponied up money to get the facility we have now. That facility was had at a bargain to we taxpayers due to the private donations that the community gave.

The board does not have an architect on staff to review and analyze options for both renovation and new nor do architects work for free. Planning for facility renovation or new (again, one of the board's responsibilities no matter who is sitting on the board) is not a decision to be made without expert analysis. Ignoring the issue will only aggravate the problem.

Moving the inside millage takes care of facility issues for decades going forward without the need for additional bond levies passing. So, for 6.73 mills now, we stabilize operations going forward and address facility issues for the entire district without needing bond levies.

The action the board has taken is the lowest cost to taxpayer options that are available both now and into the longer term. The numbers are what they are. If you believe the calculations or option chosen was wrong, then take them to a school funding expert for verification.

BooBeeDoo'

RMyer: Good sales job RMyer. Aren't you a teacher and union rep at Perkins? That will keep you off Gunner's hitlist! Keep up the propaganda...it may work for a few votes.
I however still vote NO.

RMyer

I am a teacher and have made no secret about that. I am no longer a "union rep" although I remain a union member. I also have a 20 year background in private business as a member of management. I am not concerned about being on or off anyone's "hit list". In the past 11 years as a teacher, I have attended most board meetings and expressed my opinions whether I agreed or disagreed with a decision, have requested, received, and analyzed detailed account statements, have done research on my own by going to the Board of Elections and Erie County Auditor, have talked with school treasurers in other districts about school funding issues, have communicated with the folks at the ODE offices in Columbus, have considered the alternatives presented when decisions have been made and came to my own conclusions based on my positions of father with students in the district (past and present), as a taxpayer whose own household income has declined recently, as a teacher who wants to continue to see all of our students receive the best opportunities possible to ensure a better future for them.

Now, you are aware of where I am coming from. I, however, do not have the privilege of knowing you.

Wald

"The numbers are what they are" because of Gunner. Now you want me to vote to give him more money to mismanage?

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