The Main Stream

Sep 4, 2012 12:13 AM by Sean Mooney

Hiring Freeze for TUSD

The Tucson Unified School District Governing Board is facing some tough decisions heading in to the future. The board is scheduled to vote on where money will be cut and spent in the 2013-2014 budget in December.

In the meantime, the district's leaders have found a way to save money now and the news is not good for people looking for work at TUSD.

In a just released letter from TUSD's Chief Financial Officer, Yousef Awwad, a hiring freeze has been issued on all administrative and staff positions.

TUSD Board Member, Dr. Mark Stegeman, says that while he didn't expect such drastic measures so soon, acting now may literally pay off for the district. "If we are going to have a problem in the spring in the fiscal year it is better to address it pro-actively", Stegeman said, "and do something about it now than to wait until march, so maybe that's a good thing."

TEA President, Francis Banales, says most permanent teaching positions have been placed so it will not affect a large number of teachers. It is also the union president's understanding that the freeze will mostly affect other positions in the district, "While we agree that if there's going to be $17 million deficit there should be a freeze", Banales said, "but not at the expense of covering classes for students and most of that is going to apply to administration (positions)".

While that may be the case, Mark Stegeman says that doesn't mean schools won't feel the impact, "We do have situations where teachers leave and where we hire new teachers", he said, "and as far as I can see this does apply to them, so this could create problems for principles if the teacher leaves and they need a new teacher."

The freeze was also extended to include district employees travel.

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