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Students, teachers to attend Monday board

Students and teachers plan to attend Monday night’s meeting of Collins Career Center’s governing board to protest recent layoffs.

Sunday, December 09, 2001

Students and teachers plan to attend Monday night’s meeting of Collins Career Center’s governing board to protest recent layoffs.

The Lawrence County Joint Vocational Teachers Association union released a statement Friday, saying the district’s elimination of teaching jobs will adversely impact the future of the county.

"The remaining teachers will do their best to continue quality education for the students of Collins Career Center," teachers association president Harold Henderson said. "However, the students at Collins Career Center and the Lawrence County community will be harmed by the loss of these fine teachers."

The union, part of the Ohio Education Association, said it’s also concerned about the loss of services to area students.

The district’s board of education, which plans to meet 7 p.m. Monday at the Collins Career Center office in Getaway, eliminated at least 10 positions in the high school complex last month.

The board and Collins superintendent Perry Walls cited funding losses due to decreasing enrollment as reason for the layoffs. A decline of 55 students means a more than $300,000 state funding shortfall, they said.

In prepared statements, the board said cuts were made in several areas but some programs had to be combined and/or eliminated to meet financial concerns.

Union officials commented after last month’s meeting that they were unaware the district was facing financial difficulty.

The union is currently involved in contract negotiations with the vocational school board.

Several vocational school students have also notifed the Tribune that they plan to attend and speak at Monday night’s meeting.