GH schools cut staff

Grand Haven Area Public Schools will be trimming a total of 22 teaching and support staff positions as the district deals with a $3 million deficit for the upcoming school year.
Krystle Wagner
Jun 19, 2013


The school board has approved laying off 10 teachers and cutting four support staff positions. Eight other teaching positions will be absorbed through resignations and retirements.

The district's proposed budget for the 2013-14 school year includes $2.43 million in staff reductions. It also includes additional income from sources such as renting unused building space and sharing services.

Also helping to balance the budget is $570,000 from the district's fund balance. The fund balance is projected to be at about $4.1 million on July 1, and down to about $3.5 million on June 30, 2014.

The teachers receiving layoff notices are: four from the high school, two from the middle schools and four from the elementary schools.

The support staff positions being cut are a high school testing coordinator, two part-time middle school receptionists and a part-time elementary school attendance clerk.

Superintendent Keith Konarska said they had hoped for an increase in the district's state funding for K-12 education when the state received more income, but that didn’t come to fruition.

“To say our board is disappointed would be an understatement,” he said.

Konarska said some of the laid-off staff members might be called back, depending on student enrollment and additional staff retirements.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.



It's not going to end there with these cuts. Sh** rolls down hill and custodial and transportation department cuts will be next. Watch and see. You didn't see Konarska jump up and be willing to take a salary cut did you? Don't hold your breath on that one as you will be blue in the face before you will see him step up to the plate and do that. Anyone in the higher echelon is above that. Just like you didn't see Dennis Furton step up to the plate and be willing to take a salary cut as 12 hard working custodians from Spring Lake Public Schools were let go back in June of 2011. And those 12 were 55+ in age at the time and the majority of them are still out of work. But yet they seem to keep getting salary increases. Now why is that? Maybe it's time for the tax payers to step up to the plate. Ya think?


I agree... why is it that the highest paid keep getting salary increases?? If they truly cared about the teachers and other staff, they would volunteer a paycut before having to sign letters to all those who are getting laid off. Of course if the top 5% highest paid volunteered a paycut, it wouldn't cover the cost of the 22 lost jobs, but it would at least show some leadership/character (in my opinion). 22 teachers?!?! That's ridiculous. To those who are "fine" with all of the job cuts at SL & GH, maybe it's just the type of situation that 'you don't care until it's your job on the line'... i cannot believe how many people are saying both districts are so "well run"... well run districts don't end up in financial binds where they have to cut and/or not rehire TEACHERS. Teachers are very important and the ones who will truly suffer in the end are the kids.

I agree about the SL maintenance staff cuts and that many are likely out of work still. It's horrible.


GH schools are very well run and you need a leader to run it as such. Harping on what Konarska makes does nothing. The state has taken away money form the schools plain and simple. Even if Konarska didn't take his pay for a year it probably wouldn't pay for two teachers. Economics are a lot bigger than you are probably aware of. $2,430,000 / 22 = $110,000 ave cost per position. I know they all don't make that much and it is a rolled cost for those positions but that is the average. It's a lot of money.


Right moron keep on patronizing these vampires like Konarska who are way overpaid. You missed the point entirely and it's people like yourself with that kind of mindset that his salary will keep going higher and higher(and your taxes will go higher and higher)and he will continue to do less and less. Believe me he knows exactly how to keep his bread buttered. He and others who are high on the totem are nothing more than vampires of the district. Trim the FAT at the top of the totem pole is where you need to start. Talking to someone like yourself is the same as talking to a sock puppet.


Your calling me a moron? As usual your post shows what a fricking idiot you are and how clueless you are. Konarska does a great job with what he is dealt. Do you have kids in school....oh wait you're probably only 12 years old.

Ignorance is bl...

GHAPS is a well run district, ranked in the top 20 districts in the state, despite some pockets of poverty which can contribute to some lower test scores. The teachers are very professional and care about kids. In an age when schools are criticized for their lack of math and science (which go hand in hand) GH has been ranked nationally in Science Olympiad for years. GHAPS has done a great job creating and maintaining a quality product for our children.

For a parent who pays attention and who is very active and attends board meetings, we need to be supportive and confident with our schools especially in this age of misinformation from opportunist politicians and others who are salivating at the opportunity for self gain.

Presently, I've seen number of surveys that show that show only 10%-15% are confident in our political leaders. Why then would we trust them regarding funding our schools appropriately? Proposal A has not fixed school funding like how it had promised back i the 90's. we voters need to call the legislators on this because when school districts like Grand Haven are struggling, something is amiss in Lansing. I didn't vote for this.


My property taxes have crept up year after year $2498 now! But my pay hasn't! The administrative pay just keeps going up and up. I wish someone or group would do a ballot proposal to cap those admin salaries/benefits to $50,000 a year. We got people in this town working at factories making 10/hr on a Temp Agency with no benefits living in poverty working 50 hours a week paying those taxes so administrators can have a house on the lake and the summers off!


Sounds like a good career choice to me.


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