The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

March 5, 2013

Denman outlines proposed cuts

D118 needs to save $3M

(Continued)

DANVILLE —

The total savings from eliminating 25 positions is $2.16 million.

Denman said the total savings is higher than it normally would be for 25 employees because of the large number of retirees that are leaving the district at the end of the school year.

“There wouldn’t be that much of savings otherwise,” he said.

Kathy Houpt, human resources director, said the RIFs will be done differently this year than in the past.

“People will be cut based on a combination of seniority and performance,” she said. “Anyone with an unsatisfactory or needs improvement (on their evaluation) are the first to go, then it goes by seniority.”

Houpt said she planned to meet with the Danville Education Association on Thursday for “impact bargaining” to go over the RIF procedure and “to make sure the person who is cut is the correct person to be cut.”

Denman acknowledged that with the proposed teacher cuts, “our class size will go up slightly, and we’ll trim some electives.

“We’re not looking at the total elimination of any one program,” he said.

Last year, the district’s average class size ranged between 20.9 and 22.4 students.

“This (proposed cuts) would raise our class size, but if it was raised by more than what the contract allows, we’ll add a teacher’s aide in the classroom,” he said.

The list of recommendations also includes adding four non-certified elementary school teaching assistants, due to class size, at a total cost of $116,926.

Other recommended cost savings totaling $956,310 include:

  • Make only necessary repairs for a cost savings of $200,000 in the buildings and grounds department.
  • Reduce capital expenditures in food service for a cost savings of $150,000.
  • Eliminate the commissary department at East Park Elementary School and cut its four staff members that make bulk food items, such as cookies and spaghetti sauce, for the whole district. Those food items will be made by each individual school for a cost savings of $56,310.
  • Decrease capital and purchased technology services by stretching leases over a five-year period for a cost savings of $550,000.

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