LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Clark County School District deans, teachers and parents took out their frustrations during a school board meeting Thursday over the decision by Superintendent Jesus Jara to cut 170 dean positions in order to fill a deficit.
So many people attended the meeting that there was an overflow outside the auditorium and into the lobby.
“I don’t have the money to send her to a private school. I don’t have the money to shield her," teacher Alexis Salt said to the board. "The only thing that’s stopping…you know is the deans and you’re going to take that away how dare you!”
Teachers, deans and parents had two minutes each to vent their frustrations to CCSD Trustees and Superintendent Jara.
“It’s a school’s dean that plays an essential role in a student’s personal growth and social development,” Spring Valley High School teacher Deborah Whitt said.
Jara told meeting attendees he had to fill a $33 million budget deficit. Jara said he decided to eliminate the dean positions and give them an option to take on other positions.
“As your executive officer and superintendent, I’ve had to make some very tough decisions to improve the outcomes that will bring fiscal stability to the district but also improve educational outcomes for students," Jara said.
Superintendent Jara listed areas he could've cut:
- Magnet Programs
- Performing Arts
He said he ultimately landed on the dean positions because it would mean the elimination of the least amount of jobs.
“We’ve gone from 1500 people that would’ve lost jobs to 170 that have been displaced,” Jara said.
Not everyone at the meeting was against the changes. Three people spoke out in support of the Superintendent. One was Clark County Education Association President Vikki Courtney and a fellow CCEA member. The third was a Clark County teacher.
“They’ve cut teachers..usually first," said Gerard Gomez, a teacher at Sierra Vista High School. "[But] he is the first superintendent that I can remember that has impacted the administrative staff.”
But the majority of people inside the school board meeting said there are other alternatives.
“Attrition money, carry over money," said Tim Learner, teacher at Coronado High School. "No one has asked my son’s principal.”
The decision has deans wondering who will take on their responsibilities including discipline.
“I often hear kiddos says, ‘what? We don't have no dean?! No dean?!' Oh my goodness," said Cristal Boisseau, Dean of Students at Shadow Ridge High School. "My mind is going 50 miles an hour of what the kids are thinking now. 'We don’t have a disciplinarian? We don’t have a dean? I can do whatever I choose.'”