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Tulsa School Board Meets With Teachers Union Over Budget

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Tulsa Public Schools plans drastic spending cuts this year and next. One of the first will eliminate paid substitute teachers. Tulsa Public Schools plans drastic spending cuts this year and next. One of the first will eliminate paid substitute teachers.
Eunice Dickinson often substitutes, but soon her job might be cut. "Well in that case, I'll do something else until they let me come back," said Dickerson. Eunice Dickinson often substitutes, but soon her job might be cut. "Well in that case, I'll do something else until they let me come back," said Dickerson.
Monday night, the school board met with the teachers union to talk about next year's contract. Monday night, the school board met with the teachers union to talk about next year's contract.

By Emory Bryan, The News On 6

TULSA, OK – The Tulsa Public Schools Board hears firsthand about the seriousness of the district’s budget crisis.

Tulsa Public Schools plans drastic spending cuts this year and next. One of the first will eliminate paid substitute teachers.

Monday night, the school board met with the teachers union to talk about next year's contract when some teachers won't be rehired. That's next year, but paid substitutes will be cut this year, as soon as the district identifies the people willing to replace them.

Third graders at Disney Elementary are without their regular teacher, but they have a substitute with lots of experience.

"I retired, but I came back because I like the children," said Eunice Dickerson, a substitute teacher.

Eunice Dickinson often substitutes, but soon her job might be cut.

"Well in that case, I'll do something else until they let me come back," said Dickerson.

Tulsa Public Schools has 3,100 teachers. Monday, the district called in 178 substitutes, but the average is about 200 substitutes a day.

Subs cost TPS at least $12,000 a day, because most subs earn $60 to $75 a day, depending on their qualifications.

At Disney Elementary, the school usually needs three substitutes a day. When paid substitutes are eliminated, the school thinks it can get by using other staff or parent volunteers.

"I know that I have some parents who would volunteer to sub and some who would be quite good at it," said Louis Galluzzi, Disney Elementary Principal.

Principal Louis Galluzzi remembers another time when TPS eliminated subs and says they worked through it.

"And we can do that with an employee, sometimes a teacher will take in another class, with 40 in the room, that's not easy to do," said Galluzzi.

The district has a large pool of substitutes willing to do it for the pay, but a much shorter list of people willing to do it for free.

11/13/2009  Related Story: Substitute Teachers One Of Several Cuts Proposed At TPS

 

 

 

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