SAN LORENZO -- School board members voted Tuesday night to finalize the layoff notices issued in March, a decision that will eliminate its cooperative preschool and reduce the work hours for an art teacher in the district.
An art teacher who splits his time at East Bay Arts High School and Arroyo High will no longer teach at East Bay Arts, due to decreased enrollment in the course, district officials said.
Burbank Cooperative Preschool at the district's San Lorenzo Adult School campus offers education to adults and children, but the program lost all of its district funding a few years ago and has had to rely on fundraising and fees. That money ran out and enrollment dropped, so the district is eliminating the teaching position shared by two preschool teachers at the school.
One of them, Pauline Cutter, has taught at the school for 22 years. She said the program lost students when the 5-year-old age requirement for transitional kindergarten at the elementary school was moved from December to September. The preschool has already begun to sell its furniture.
"It's just unfortunate," Cutter said.
School board President Norman Fobert said it is unclear whether the district will be able to rescind the layoffs, like the district has done in the past.
"We are in negotiations with the bargaining unit, and that coupled with the (state) budget situation means of course there will be changes, but we don't know what those are yet," he said. Concerns raised last month by the union president that too many students were taking teaching aide courses in the district, rather than art or music, have not been looked into yet since the district has been busily administering state exams, he said.
Ashly McGlone covers San Leandro, San Lorenzo and the Washington Township Health Care District. Contact her at 510-293-2463. Follow her at Twitter.com/AshlyReports.