By Terry Dean
The District 97 school board voted March 8 to cut more than 50 teachers and administrators for the 2011-2012 school year — effective should the district's April 5 referendum not be approved by voters.
Those staff members will be receiving termination slips from the district. As reported by Wednesday Journal on Feb. 16, the teacher reductions include tenured and non-tenured teachers. The administrative cuts include reclassifying the assistant superintendent for teaching and learning to a curriculum coordinator position. On March 22, the board is scheduled to vote to eliminate support staff, including school secretaries.
Board President Peter Traczyk said no one wants to see these cuts and the district is hopeful their April referendum will be approved.
Prior to the board's vote last week, 11 parents spoke during public comments in support of several teachers on the list to be cut. The parents encouraged the district and board to reconsider eliminating those specific teachers.
The seven-member board voted unanimously on the staffing reductions.