Weather Forecast


Commentary, input sought as Perham schools gear for more budget, staff cuts

The "three R's" will be discussed and debated at great length over the next six months by the Perham School Board.

Those are "Restructuring, Reductions and Revenue," though the third "R" is almost imaginary, since nobody connected to the Perham-Dent schools is dreaming of any new revenue sources.

A timeline has been prepared for the coming months.

The current stage is the gathering of input from district residents, students and families and staff. Input may be submitted via online surveys, contact with any school board member or the superintendent, online surveys, and attendance at school board meetings or submission of written testimony to the school board.

A survey is also inserted in most copies of this current edition of the Perham Enterprise Bulletin.

"Despite our profound disappointment regarding funding, we must continue to do our work as professionally as humanly possible, keeping the students from feeling our stressors," wrote Superintendent Tamara Uselman in a prepared statement submitted to the school board Nov. 19. "I ask that all of us--citizens of the district, students, families, and employees--work in a supportive manner as we consider difficult choices on the long road ahead."


December 10: Committee of the Whole meeting, 6 p.m., high school library, with discussion of possible reductions in the current 2008?09 school year and 2009?10. Targets include food service, community service, and general fund. Also, review of levy survey data.

December 17: Full School Board meeting, taking action on 2008-09 restructuring and reductions with January 1 implementation. Adopt revised 2008-09 budget.

January 21: Development of list of possible new revenue-restructuring-reductions continues at regular board meeting.

January 28: Committee of Whole meeting with continued review of list of cuts, restructuring.

February 1: Deadline for teachers to submit severance notice with guarantee of severance benefits.

February 11: Committee of the Whole meeting--continue to develop list of cuts.

February 23: School Board meeting, action on requests to lay off employees.

March 2: Committee of the Whole meeting.

March 16: School board meeting--List of new revenue -restructuring-reductions is finalized. First of two required resolutions to reduce workforce.

April 6: School board meeting--second of two required resolutions to reduce force tenured workforce. First of two required resolutions to reduce non-tenured workforce.

May 20: School board meeting--second of two required resolutions to reduce non-tenured employees.