A few days ago, I sent a letter to the Jefferson County (CO) Superintendent and Board of Education, writing to oppose recommended librarian cuts. Here’s the reply that arrived last evening:
Dear Mr. Lance,
Members of the Board of Education received a copy of your email correspondence regarding your concerns with the suggested reduction of teacher librarians. As your elected representatives, Board members appreciate hearing from community members on how we work together to make Jeffco Public Schools stronger. Your comments regarding teacher librarians will be considered as we develop our balanced budget for the coming year. Please know that I, also, very much appreciate everything that our teacher librarians do to support the district’s educational outcomes which lead to increased student achievement.
All of us agree with you that teacher librarians are important to student achievement. That being said, if the required reductions reach $70 million over the next two years, every part of Jeffco will be impacted. We are cautiously optimistic with the Governor’s announcement on the state’s revenue estimates that our reductions may not reach the $70 million level. However, we will not know the extent of the state reductions to public education until later in the spring. Our reductions will be dependent upon the level of cuts to K-12 education from the state budget. In addition, the listed budget suggestions are simply the starting point for a two year budget process. I know we will strive to sustain teacher librarians as long as possible.
Our budget process is far from over and no decisions have been made. Please continue to watch the process and give your input. We are holding Budget Forums across the county on the morning of Saturday, January 28 from 9:00-10:30 am at five high schools across the county: Arvada High School, Bear Creek High School, Columbine High School, Evergreen High School and Ralston Valley High School. These forums will be one more chance for community input on our budget. Additionally, we read and listen to everything that is sent to us.
Again, thank you for writing to the Board of Education.
Jill C. Fellman
Secretary, Jeffco Public Schools Board of Education
C: Heather Beck, chief academic officer