Denair Unified's new interim superintendent didn't pull any punches during Thursday's board of trustees meeting, calling for even more cuts to help fix the district's financial problems. He also, however, rescinded previous teacher lay-offs that didn't "make sense" to him.
“The district will get back to where it was,” said Interim Superintendent Walt Hanline. “It’ll be back. In order to that we’re going to have to suck it up and make the cuts.”
Hanline was appointed interim superintendent in mid-April, after the board of trustees unanimously voted to terminate Superintendent Edward Parraz in March.
Hanline announced there will be more cuts to support staff in the next fiscal year. The board also approved the restructuring of 15 management positions in order to “align resources to accomplish priorities within a balanced budget” and to “evaluate and reallocate necessary funding based on identifiable needs in relation to the Strategic Plan.”
Hanline promised at Thursday's meeting to get the district competitive in salaries after making necessary cuts.
To help put the district on the financial level in the short-term, the board took action to authorize a cash flow loan from the Stanislaus County Superintendent of Schools up to $1.25 million.
In order to remain solvent for the next fiscal year, the district needs to cut ongoing expenses by $1.3 million by the end of next year. The district has already laid off teachers and support staff, cut programs and cut off management salaries by 3.5 percent.
The board also took action to rescind layoff notices to teachers William Douglas, Patricia Guillen, Halla Bernard, Robert Wagner, Curtis Wooten and a teacher whose name is unidentified, a total of two full-time positions.
“The layoffs made no sense to me,” said Hanline. “I will not push forward an action if it doesn’t make sense to me.”
The board announced the retirement of three teachers, which will help to alleviate the financial impact of the rescinded layoffs.