You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Thu, Apr 22, 2010 : 7:43 p.m.

18 Ypsilanti teachers may soon receive layoff notices

By Tom Perkins

The Ypsilanti school board will vote on a proposal Monday to lay off 18 teachers.

Administrators are making the recommendations in accordance with district's deficit elimination plan, which calls for $6.4 million in reductions by next school year.

Ypsilanti Education Association President Kelly Powers, head of the union that represents the teachers, said the district will cut 23 positions after this school year. Five of those teachers have retired, and their positions won't be filled. The other 18 will receive layoff notices effective June 30.


Ypsilanti may have 23 fewer teachers in the fall. This photo was taken at Chapelle Elementary School, which is slated to close.

Tom Perkins | For

Emma Jackson, the district's spokeswoman, said they anticipate some teachers will opt for retirement, eliminating the need for so many layoffs.

"We are cautiously optimistic some of those folks will be back," she said.

Powers called the district overstaffed and said she doesn't oppose the layoffs. Enrollment steadily declined until the last several years, but the district is projecting 50 fewer students in the 2010-11 school year.

"It costs a lot more money when we’re overstaffed," Powers said. "They should have been lowering our staffing levels for several years, they haven't, and that’s part of the reason we're in the deficit we are in."

Board President David Bates said no one wants to approve layoffs, but the deficit and continued problems with state funding require tough decisions.

"My daughter has a couple of those teachers on the list, and she is heartbroken," he said.

The deficit elimination plans calls for 40 positions to be cut in total, amounting to $1.85 million in savings. Powers said the next round of layoffs is likely after the next school year.

The Ypsilanti school district isn't alone in anticipating teacher layoffs.

The Ann Arbor school board voted Wednesday to issue 191 layoff notices, although the actual number of layoffs is expected to be much lower. The Saline school board agreed to issue 63 pink slips last week, but is aiming to reduce the teaching ranks by 20 positions.

Tom Perkins is a freelance writer for Reach the news desk at or 734-623-2530.



Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 6:11 p.m.

Perhaps if the gov. was'nt doing everything she can to run off business in this state there would be more money for the schools


Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 2:53 p.m.

Very dutch.


Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 9:09 a.m.

I still can't figure out how the US government can find money to fund everything but education in our own country. Let's send some more money overseas.


Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 7:45 a.m.

stunhsif said: "Way to go for looking out for the taxpayers who pay your wages, and way to go for looking out for our children who will have to deal with larger class sizes. " Except that it isn't the union's job to look out for the taxpayer. That duty belongs to the school board. It isn't the union's job to watch out for school children. That job belongs to the administration, the parents and the teachers. It's the union's job to look out for its membership, and that's about it. Voting against millages won't get rid of problems in the school system. It will only get rid of the school system's money. That seems like a poor way to "look out for our children."


Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 7:42 a.m.

@Chris, you're absolutely right. I think it's absolutely horrible that a good education for Michigan's children does not cross party lines, because if any issue should it's this one. But, Michigan's Republicans don't see it that way, which I find appalling. I find it interesting that Powers is now saying Ypsi is overstaffed, when before she was screaming at the thought of losing a single job. "We should have been lowering our staffing levels for several years." Really? How strange that this is coming out of her mouth. Does this explain her reluctance to discuss a small reduction in salary that could have saved some of these jobs? And lastly, is she speaking for the majority of the teachers she represents? What I've been hearing doesn't mesh with this.


Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 7:15 a.m.

Jennifer Granholm warned that this would happen if the Republican held Michigan legislator did not consider other form of revenue to bolster education in Michigan. Blaming Jennifer is not just stupid, it is ignorant. The Republican party did this, not the Governor. Want to blame someone? Blame your neighbors who voted against the millage and the Republican tea party, and wealthy business men.


Fri, Apr 23, 2010 : 7:10 a.m.

The only folks left in Ypsi/Arbor will be the old, the poor, and the dumb. Yahoo!


Thu, Apr 22, 2010 : 10:18 p.m.

Way to go YEA, dis-employee 23 of your dues paying union brothers and sisters who are the most vulnerable, lowest paid, hardest working coworkers of yours. Way to go for looking out for the taxpayers who pay your wages, and way to go for looking out for our children who will have to deal with larger class sizes. Thanks so very very much, we will remember this come millage renewal time :-).


Thu, Apr 22, 2010 : 9:40 p.m.

Hmmmmm, everyone leaving Michigan, school enrollment declining...a little late to assess the teacher/student ratio! Ah, no problem...we'll just ask Jenny for some of that lottery money that's funding schools so well!!!


Thu, Apr 22, 2010 : 7:35 p.m.

Maybe Kelly Powers should be in charge of Human Resources when Mr. Fulton is eased out. She seems to have tha problem figured out.