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  • Friday, March 13, 2009

     

    OUSD Trustees vote to close Silverado Elementary School

    OUSD TRUSTEES VOTE TO CLOSE SILVERADO

    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE UPDATE
    a news service of Orange Net News /O/N/N/
    Independent insight into OUSD

    At their regular March 12th Board Meeting, the Orange Unified Trustees in a close 4-3 vote, voted to close the district’s smallest school Silverado Elementary School. Three other small schools mentioned as possible candidates for closure were not considered at the meeting.

    During the meeting, the Silverado School supporters went through a rollercoaster of emotions as the OUSD Board tackled procedural motions that were attempted to keep the school open. OUSD Trustee Dr. Alexia Deligianni made a procedural motion to remove the Silverado closure proposal from the list of Board Budget actions to be voted on. That motion ended in a 3-3 tie after OUSD Trustee Mark Wayland abstained. Confusion followed as the tie was at first interpreted as a win for the “yes” (to remove the school from the list) side giving an emotional uplift to the Silverado School supporters. Those emotions were soon dashed after other Board members pointed out that under Roberts Rules a tie vote is a “No” vote. After consulting the rules, the motion did indeed fail in the tie. Not giving up, Deligianni moved to reconsider the motion. When the dust from the all the procedural votes settled, the school was voted to be closed on a 4-3 vote (Yes: Rick Ledesma; Kim Nichols; Melissa Smith; Mark Wayland-No: Kathy Moffat; John Ortega; Alexia Deligianni).

    The Board also voted to approve all the OUSD Staff budget cutting proposals: elimination of middle school after school athletics; a $30 athletic fee to high school sports students; closing Silverado Elementary School; Reduction to District Administrative Staff in 5 areas (savings of over $1.8 million); reduction in school site staffing; capture of Tier III funds (see story below); increase in Class Size Reduction to 25:1 ratio.

    In addition, the OUSD Board accepted the OUSD Staff’s recommendations for negotiated concessions that would amount to $7.6 million dollars from the OUSD employee associations including a growingly controversial 3.75% pay cut to all employees ($6 million of the total). With the $7.6 million in concessions needed, few long time Board watchers are willing to assume the Board will get all the concessions it needs from the employee groups which mean another round of cuts will be needed. Comments by Board President Rick Ledesma and Trustee Kim Nichols seem to be preparing the community for further cuts in the months ahead

    Another unknown is the May 19th Special election with 6 Ballot Initiatives. Three of the initiatives are considered vital to pass if further cuts to the current year budget are to be averted. (For Ballot Inforamtion CLICK ON: BALLOT )

    Watch for detailed complete coverage of the Orange Unified School District, including details of the May 12 meeting with the regular edition of
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE

    This edition of
    ORANGE Unified Schools INSIDE UPDATE

    is an independent news service of Orange Net News /O/N/N/


    Orange_NetNews@yahoo.com

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