Dunlap teachers, parents oppose proposed cuts

Jan 15, 2014

The Dunlap school district should keep its teachers and current band and orchestra programs next year.  That’s the message from hundreds of parents and teachers voicing concern over proposed staff and program cuts.  The proposed spending plan would lay-off nearly 20 teachers, cut school bussing options and raise student fees. About 40 people spoke out against the proposed cuts during last night’s school board meeting. Many are opposed to cutting fifth grade band and fourth grade orchestra programs.  Tina Holloway is the band director at Dunlap Valley Middle School. She says delaying music classes hurts the students and the district:

 “We just don't feel that it’s worth a temporary fix of budget because obviously we have more and more students coming here and arts attracts students, and this situation is not going to go away.  So we need a different answer here than just cutting our programs. We need a long-term solution and this is not it.”

 The proposed budget would also cut some study halls and multiple librarians.  The district says the staff cuts are needed to fill a more than two-million-dollar deficit caused by more students and not enough revenue. Many parents urged the district to reduce administrators before looking at teachers.  Superintendent Jay Marino says administrators plan to take salary freezes next academic year. No decisions have been made.  The school board has about two months to vote on any staffing changes.