Drastic Cuts in the Rockford School District

By: Nichole Vrsansky
By: Nichole Vrsansky

Down to the bare bones, that's how some are describing the Rockford School District.

The School Board trimmed the district by 456 teachers and administrators last night. The cuts mean many students will no longer have art, music or band.

The seats will be empty. The teacher will be gone. This is what band class will probably look like at Flinn Middle School next year.

"This is the band job I've waited my entire life to get and losing it is tough," says Band Teacher Tim Braun.

This Golden Apple recipient and 16 other teachers at Flinn received their pink slips today. Meanwhile, students reflected on what they'll miss most:

"Mr. Braun is a very good teacher. I like being in his class and I like to play my instrument," says Kyle Ward.

"It's something new and you get to experience something different," says Allie Krebs.

The buzz around the halls is that more cuts should be made downtown instead of in the classrooms, but many school board members say no department went untouched and many high level positions were rift.

"The cabinet, the superintendent's cabinet, all high level people,” says Rockford School Board Member David Kelley.

But were they cut or reassigned?

There's a mix, some will be brought back and reassigned," adds Kelley.

But some teachers, including Mr. Braun, could also be reassigned.

"But with all the other band, orchestra (…) teachers also surplus, where are they going to put all of us," questions Braun.

Next week the new superintendent, Dr. Dennis Thompson, will be in town. Many school board members say they're waiting on him to make the next move. It could mean some teachers are brought back, but it could also mean more cuts have to be made.


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