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Crossing guard duty at issue

December 08, 2010 - Last year's budget cuts still weighed heavily on the Board of Education's mind as it considered adding nine hours of crossing-guard duty per day.

The final decision was to wait and see how much money and when they would receive the Education Job Fund before spending it.

"It is my understanding it is not in the budget and I would like to see were do we need the assistance," said Rosalie Lieblang, board treasurer. "It is important, but so are other thing we would like to do as well."

Anita Banach, human resources director, explained the crossing guard role is currently covered by custodians, teachers and administrators.

"With reduction in staff and custodial and now spreading all the jobs we are looking at how are we doing things best and with is most efficient," she added.

"Whenever you are doing cuts it is going mean more work and responsibility for the people that are left," Susan Boatman, board vice-president said. "It is how our economy works now. People need to figure out other ways to do business."

The nine hours would be divided between three people. It could also be divided amongst schools, such as Andersonville Elementary could have 30 minutes in the morning while another school could have 30 minutes in the afternoon.

Banach assured the board it would not be a new position but additional hours for those already working. Board Secretary Joan Patterson agreed there is a need.

"But there are a lot of cuts we made last year," she said. "I think there are other things out there equally pressing. I would like to take a look at the the whole grouping. I don't want first come, first serve."

Patterson also asked if it could be a volunteer position.

"I don't know of volunteers doing it on a set schedule," Banach answered. "There is no reason why we couldn't have volunteers. It's a lot of hours to cover - long, cold hours."

Cheryl McGinnis added she thought the $10,342 per half year was worth it, especially using the Education Job Fund.

"The students are our responsibility. It is something we need to take care of and provide," she said.

Banach said it is the same safety concern the district has always had and it will continue to be covered, one way or another if the board did not approve the request.

Superintendent Dr. Rod Rock ended the discussion saying the board could talk about it again after they had more details for the Education Job Fund.

Wendi graduated from the University of Michigan-Flint with a degree in communications. She wrote for the Michigan Times college paper and Grand Blanc View before joining The Clarkston News in October 2007.
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