CUSD Board of Trustees approves layoffs
COMPTON—The Compton Unified School District approved a resolution on Tuesday, July 24, that lays off eight employees because of a lack of work and funds during the upcoming fiscal year.
An attendance systems analyst, catering manager, four executive secretaries, one financial analyst and a financial manager will lose their jobs, and receive 45-days-notice.
The action was the second part of the CUSD fiscal stabilization plan. Each district must submit an outline to Los Angeles County this year, and demonstrate its ability to remain financially viable if voters do not approve the state tax increase initiative in November.
Board members Micah Ali, Satra Zurita, Emma Sharif, Margie Garrett and Marjorie Shipp approved the resolution. Trustees Skyy Fisher and Mae Thomas voted no.
Catering Manager Stephanie Taylor said the lack of work and funds given as reasons for her layoff do not apply to her position.
“The student nutrition department closed in the black with more than $100,000 in revenue this year,” she said. “The catering department has done more than $50,000 worth of work with only a few departments participating.”
The district spent approximately $500,000 in outside catering services over the past three years, Taylor said, and should not focus on increasing the bottom line of outside vendors.
“Catering is a lucrative business that can support student nutrition services and the general fund,” she said. “Every competing school catering department I have spoken to makes at least $85, 000 for its district ea ch year.”
Tr ust ee Sk yy Fishe r said he und erstands the nee d for a fiscal stabiliz ation plan, but still has co ncer ns about send ing people home.
“I hav e alw ays been an ad - voc ate for te ch no lo gy, fa cili - ties and the art s,” he said. “Th e dis tric t devastate d the se program s, and they never come back.”
Fisher sent pictures of the wa rehouse to Interim Supe r- intendent Dr. Car mel la Franco, and the fa cility re - mains seriously backlogge d.
“I underst and they are shor t- handed,” he sa id. “We still have testing suppl ies and other items needed at our facilities, yet we continue cutting from thi s de par tment. I have been going ba ck and forth ab ou t this and cann ot support this reso lution.”
Franco sa id the stabilization plan is a se rious matter, and must be ac ted upon immediately.
“I do not thin k any one wants layoffs in the distric t,” she said. “The county is waitin g on the outcome of this vote, and the trustees can revisit this resolution in the futu re.”
The district must elimin ate someone else if the warehouse manager po sition remains in the budget.
“The previous exe cutive cabinet members mad e these re co mmend at ions ,” Fishe r said. “Thos e two people cut ever yth ing and lef t the district in a catastrophe.”
The layoff pro po sals do not make sense, he said, yet the plan move s forward.
“We have a lot of employe es in thi s off ice who walk around and do not hing,” Fis her said . “Peopl e take two- hour lu nches at Frid ay’s. The tr ustees shou ld cut more executiv e secretarie s and le ave the vita l distr ict positions alone.”
Board Member Mic ah Al i said all th e layo ffs con ce rn hi m.
“I feel ext remely bad about one person on this res olution who will lose a job,” he sai d. “There will probably be 20 more peopl e displace d before this is over.”
Ali said he has grave fiscal conce rns about the CUSD.
“Peopl e bo ast about 30 years’ experie nce and say they kn ow their job,” he said. “They do not know their job and would not ha ve to do things twice if they kne w what to do.”
The district’s cash position keeps the CUSD aflo at , Ali said, and people’s livelihoods are on the line.
“I do not suppor t any layoffs, but we hav e to weigh the fisca l stability of the district,” he sai d. “The bo ard has to support this, but make corrections al ong th e way.”
Th e nex t Boa rd of Tru stee s meeting is on Tuesday,
Aug . 14.