Michigan Education Association

Pontiac layoffs go against president’s plan

Federal stimulus dollars meant to save jobs, not eliminate them

PONTIAC, Mich., March 10, 2009 – The Pontiac School Board’s decision to lay off all public school employees is in direct opposition to what President Obama said districts should be doing in his speech this morning before the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Obama made it clear that the stimulus money that districts like Pontiac will receive “will ensure that hundreds of thousands of teachers and school personnel are not laid off – because those Americans are not only doing jobs they cannot afford to lose, they are rendering a service our nation cannot be denied.”

According to the Senate Fiscal Agency, the Pontiac school district is expected to receive more than $27 million in federal stimulus funds, including $17.4 million in stabilization funding. The stabilization funding—more than any other district in Oakland County—is specifically meant to prevent layoffs.

The Pontiac School Board’s decision last night to go against what the president intended is an unnecessary and devastating step, and it is being sold to the public with misrepresentation and incorrect information.

Contact: Kia Hagens, MEA UniServ director 248-377-8064

 “The mission of the MEA is to ensure that the education of our students and the working environments of our members are of the highest quality.”

Updated: March 10, 2009 3:43 PM