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  • Wednesday, November 11, 2009


    OUSD Staff recommends new cuts

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

    As California Budget crisis continues….
    OUSD Staff recommends new cuts

    The Orange Unified School District continues to deal with the $32 million three year budget shortfall caused by the current California Budget Crisis. Dealing with the continued state driven budgetary crisis that will cause a projected 9 million dollar budget shortfall in the 2010-2011 school year, at the October 29th Orange Unified School District School Board Meeting, OUSD Assistant Superintendent of Administrative Services Mike Christensen presented a laundry list of possible cuts that the OUSD Administration is currently studying. Those further needed cuts included the following possibilities: the elimination of district busing support funds for high sports programs and the GATE program: class size increases in elementary and high school levels; elimination of the Elementary Instrumental Music Program and elementary summer school; and the closing of 1 of the remaining 4 small schools-Riverdale Elementary. Staff reductions also under consideration are high school assistant principal secretaries; the third high school assistant principal; elementary library media technicians and custodial staffing cuts; and increasing class size ratios.

    Unlike past less severe budget crisis, current OUSD Superintendent Dr. Renae Dreier has actively sought input from administrators, teachers, employees, students, parents and community members in addressing the crisis. Her solution oriented approach has paid off in big buy-ins from the community at-large and the local teachers and used the budget crisis to forge an almost unified community front to the crisis. Taking the lead to model cuts, she has slashed her own offices workers, budget, and frills and amended her own contract for a two percent cut that she asked all district employees take. In her short time as OUSD Superintendent, Dreier single handedly has created an atmosphere of shared sacrifice after years of out-of-control spending by former OUSD Superintendent Dr. Thomas Godley who retired in controversy by taking a retirement package after boosting his own pay several times.

    Needing to cut $ 4.5 million in additional cuts over the coming two budget years, items form the October 29th possible cuts list will be presented as real figures for the OUSD Board at the November 12, 2009 OUSD School Board Meeting when staff presents recommended cuts with budget figures attached as Information Item 13 A (Agenda Page 4). Final consideration and a vote on the staff recommended cuts will take place at the December 10, 2009 OUSD Board Meeting.

    Canyon Transfer Impact Report at the November 12, 2009 Meeting
    The OUSD Staff will present an Information Report (13 B agenda page 5) on the impact of the proposed territory transfer of the Inter-Canyon Leagues request for transfer of the canyon communities to the Saddleback Unified School District. Parents of students at the now closed Silverado Elementary School are spearheading the transfer of the canyon communities to Saddleback Unified despite the fact that all inter-district student transfers to Saddleback Unified have been approved by OUSD since the closing of Silverado Elementary School.

    Another Charter School Petition
    Just after the OUSD Board rejected a “spam” charter attempt at the October 29, 2009 OUSD Board Meeting, the district has received another application for a charter school and will be required to again hold a public hearing and spend valuable staff time investigating the application. Action Item 12 A (agenda page 3) is a vote to hold a public hearing on the Barack H. Obama Leadership Academy Charter School application at the December 10, 2009 Board Meeting.

    INSIDE Community Donations to OUSD Schools
    Canyon H.S. ASB- $4000 in pay stipends for Girls Tennis and Water Polo; Serrano PFO- $851 in floor savers; Tustin Lexus-$3,650 in supplies to Serrano Elementary; Chapman Hills PTA-$347 paint and timers; Office Max - $1,000 in school supplies to California Elementary; Orange Education Foundation- 1,200 hand Avant Hand 16 oz hand sanitizers to all OUSD classrooms. (for a complete list of the $14,600in donations see page 7-8 of the Agenda).

    INSIDE the OUSD Budget
    Total $1,041,000
    2009 Attorney Fee Tally:
    11/13/08 Parker & Covert (for 1/09 -6/09) $ 200,000
    3/12/09 Atkinson, Andelson, Loya (Sp. Ed) $ 50,000
    3/12/09 Parker & Covert (Special Ed) $ 98,000
    6/18/09 Parker & Covert (09-10) $ 400,000
    6/18/09 Parker & Covert (Special Ed) $ 200,000
    6/18/09 Parker & Covert (property) $ 55,000
    6/18/09 Atkinson, Andelson, Loya (property)$ 35,000
    Total $1,038,000

    2009 Consultant/ Speaker Fee Tally:
    01/24/09 Leadership Associates Consultants $ 3,000
    2009 TOTAL $1,041,000

    Former Superintendent Godley’s Retirement Bonus running total (beginning 8/2008):
    * The Godley Retirement Bonus presented here is an estimate of the amount in “bonus retirement” accrued since the Superintendent’s retirement on 6/30/08 using a 6% lifetime formula calculated here at $1210 a month since 8/08. The actual retirement plan the former OUSD Superintendent opted to take is not public information and the figures presented are only as an estimate of the taxpayer costs after the OUSD trustees voted against an amendment to exclude Godley from the retirement program. The on-going estimated figure is presented as a reminder to the community of the high cost in educational tax dollars the OUSD Board vote to allow the former Superintendent to participate in the 6% retirement incentive cost the OUSD education community in tax dollars. Godley retired from OUSD on June 30, 2008 after he worked for the school district for a little over five years.

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2008: $901,200
    2008 Attorney Fee Tally:
    6/19/08 Parker & Covert $ 60,000
    6/05/08 Miller, Brown & Dannis $ 40,000
    6/05/08 Parker & Covert $150,000
    6/05/08 Parker & Covert $200,000
    2/07/08 Parker & Covert $100,000
    11/15/07 Parker & Covert (for 1/08 to 6/08) $200,000
    2008 Consultant/ Speaker Fee Tally:
    11/13/08 Subs for SDCDE (Reading First) $24,000
    11/13/08 SDCDE (Reading First) $30,000
    10/30/08 Dr. Willard Daggett (ICLE) $ 4,500
    10/16/08 Dr. Parker 40 pt Consultant $ 4,200
    9/25/08 Visual Ink for Sadler Consultant <$ 6,600> CANCELED in 2009
    9/25/08 Bob Sadler Consultant Fee $ 8,500
    9/25/08 Candace Simpson-Sadler Helper $ 5,500
    7/24/08 Dr. Parker 40 pt Consultant $ 10,000
    4/17/08 Dr. Kenneth Stichter Speaker Fee $ 6,500
    3/7/08 Dr. Kathleen Weigel Speaker Fee $ 8,000
    Consultant Total $ 101, 200
    2008 TOTAL $ 901,200

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2007: $704,090.00**

    2007 Administrative Conference/Travel: hidden since 6/8/06**

    **JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to APPROVE Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2006: $849,717.00*
    2006 Administrative Conference/Travel: Total $ 18,317 *
    * JUNE 8th, 2006 Trustees VOTE to Give OUSD Superintendent the power to
    APPROVE OUSD Travel Requests taking this item OUT of the PUBLIC AGENDA

    Total for Watched Tax Dollars approved in 2005: $978,300.00:

    Next OUSD Board Meeting Thursday November 12, 2009 -OUSD BOARD ROOM

    CLOSED SESSION- 6:00 pm
    OUSD Regular Session: 7:00 pm

    For more information call the OUSD Superintendent’s office at 714-628-4040
    For budgeting questions call Business Services at 714-628-4015
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