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Education

Saginaw school officials put off decision on closing schools

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Steve Carmody
/
Michigan Radio
Speaker after speaker berated school district officials for considering a plan that would merge two high schools, close two other schools and lay off many teachers and other school employees.

The Saginaw school board has put off a decision on the district’s financial future.   

A few hundred people attended a meeting last night on a controversial plan that includes closing one of the district’s high schools.

“My pressure’s going up just by the thought of Saginaw High closing,” said Saginaw city councilman Norman Braddock, which drew cheers from the audience.

Speaker after speaker berated school district officials for considering a plan that would merge two high schools, close two other schools and lay off many teachers and other school employees.  

Superintendent Carlton Jenkins says he understands the passions involved.

“Anytime you look at closing or off-lining a building…it’s a personal attachment,” Jenkins said after the meeting.

Beverly Yanca is the Saginaw school board president. She says the board is giving the public until Friday to make alternative proposals.

“We are certainly going to give a serious look at them…to see if it is feasible to implement,” says Yanca. 

But the district may have little choice but to approve the plan when it meets again on Saturday.    The state is threatening to withhold the district’s state aid payment, if a deficit elimination plan is not in place by Monday.

The district is facing a roughly five million dollar deficit.

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