Education supporters wore pink during Pink Friday 09 as a symbol of support for education and in protest of all the pink slips being given to teachers.
Turlock supporters took to the streets“marching” around the city as these people were pictured while going around from corner to corner at the West Main St. and Soderquist Rd. intersection by Osborn Elementary School.
96 full-time Turlock school teachers and 32 certified administrators received pink slips on Friday as state law requires that a 45 day notice of lay off be sent out no later than May 15th.
72 of the pink slips were given out at the elementary level.
The Turlock Unified School District (TUSD) is looking at an approximate $6.5 million deficit for the 2009-10 budget.
The projected $6.5 million deficit could be effected worse by lower than predicted state revenue and the bad economy, but may also be impacted in a good way depending on May 19, 2009 Special Election propositions that would support school funding.
Turlock teachers and school employees will be on edge until May when TUSD will have to decide what cuts to implement.
Some teachers and staff are complaining about the cuts because TUSD Board of Trustees were presented $ 6 million in possible cuts rather than laying offs.
Despite those options, educators were given pink slips on Pink Friday 09.
TUSD Board of Trustees have stated they had to send out the pink slips, meeting a 45 day notice mandated by the state, just in case lay offs had to be made.
On top of cutting jobs, the expected “by seniority” safe guard is no longer in play. Competency standards for teachers are now an issue, mostly because of the two magnet schools.
TUSD has a Dual Immersion program at Dutcher Middle School and will have a Two-Way Immersion program at Osborn Elementary School. These schools are expecting increased enrollment and will demand more bilingual teachers.
TUSD adopted a resolution “Regarding the Determination of District Needs in Selected Certificated
Positions: Competency Standards.” This resolution was passed with a 5-0 vote and will give teachers who hold a Bilingual Cross-cultural Language and Academic Development Certificate or special education teachers some retention priority.
TUSD Superintendent Sonny Da Marto has made several statements saying that he hopes implementing the lay offs won’t have to happen. Da Marto has referenced a philosophy of everyone sharing the pain rather than just a few taking it all.
Da Marto and most educators feel that the TUSD Board of Trustees won’t have to cut jobs whether it means that everyone takes a cut in pay, adjustments to the system are made, or some of the proposed $6 million in other cuts be implemented.
TUSD will not begin to implement any lay offs until May.