Council wants to weigh in on schools' cuts

Monday, June 14, 2010 at 12:10pm

Some Metro Council members aren’t giving up when it comes to the school board’s decision to outsource school custodians and reduce the hours of bus drivers.

On Tuesday night — shortly after the council votes on Mayor Karl Dean’s $1.52 billion budget — the council will weigh in on a memorializing resolution that would ask the school board to reconsider budget reductions, specifically cuts aimed at custodians, groundskeepers and bus drivers.

The resolution has been co-sponsored by council members Edith Langster, Vivian Wilhoite, Erica Gilmore, Erik Cole, Jamie Hollin and Jerry Maynard. 

“Privatizing the groundskeepers, janitors and reducing the hours of bus driver is just something I’m not for,” Langster said. “These are people who have families. It’s so unfair. Why do we always start at the bottom?” 

Approval of the nonbinding memorializing resolution would be symbolic of the council’s attitude toward school cuts, but it’s unlikely to reverse the school board’s decision.

Though several council members have bemoaned the school board’s choice to move towards privatization, under the Metro Charter the council only establishes the level of funding Metro Nashville Public Schools receives. The school board decides how dollars are distributed throughout the district.

Both Director of Schools Jesse Register and the school board have indicated that if more money were appropriated to the schools budget, other areas of need would take precedence over maintaining the status quo in terms of custodial and bus operations.

“They’re not paying any attention to us,” Langster acknowledged.

5 Comments on this post:

By: myopinion2 on 6/14/10 at 1:01

They haven't even privatized yet and the grass is 18 inches tall at one school on my street. I guess everyone is taking sick and vacation days before they lose them.

By: artsmart on 6/15/10 at 5:31

The schools are filthy as well. I'm glad Dr. Register is making sure the right things are being done, haha.

By: govskeptic on 6/15/10 at 6:32

This group of councilpersons should be chastized for trying to
appear much more important than they are! The council has
spoken as has the Elected School Board on this subject. Ms. Langster, Gilmore, and some of the others are so uninformed on so much, yet try
to act involved and up to date with concern. It's a joke that keeps on
giving in this city.

By: Kosh III on 6/15/10 at 6:53

Langster is right. Why is it always the lowest paid who are cut? Why not outsource some of the high-paying jobs in the central office. It's not like they do anything to deserve it.

By: breathofdeath on 6/15/10 at 9:55

The 40 Jealous Whores need not stand so high and mighty and should take a good long look in the mirror because Metro has outsourced (with council approval) most if not all of the custodial duties in Metro buildings. And hasn't the council signed off on recent city budgets that led to various employees being laid off? Talk about hypocrites!