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      Community quizzes TPS Superintendent finalists

      Dr. Tom Watkins is president of an education consulting firm.

      Superintendent finalists Dr. Jerome Pecko and Dr. Tom Watkins spent Thursday addressing the concerns of Toledo taxpayers.

      Both men are vying for the position to lead the Toledo Public School district after the resignation of former Superintendent John Foley, whose tenure ended July 1.

      All issues were on the table Wednesday, but there was one concern that kept coming up. Everyone is concerned about what were going to do next year because there TMs another huge deficit looming out there in excess of 40 million dollars, said Dr. Pecko. He said it TMs essential that the board finds a way to work on reducing the deficit as early as this school year.

      Dr. Watkins also acknowledged the challenges ahead. Budgets were cut the other night but it TMs a beginning. What I TMm hearing from Columbus is that we TMre going to have more financial problems coming down the road, Dr. Watkins. He admits there are difficult decisions ahead, those decisions are best made by engaging the community in this decision making process.

      Chris Varwig is a mother of a senior student at Bowser High School. The last rounds of cuts for the 2010 budget eliminated some of the programming her daughter planned to take. One less credit, one less opportunity for class time and that will effect her when she TMs going out into the college market, Varwig. Her concerns were focused around how additional cuts would impact curriculum. It feels good to be involved in the process and I think that more parents should be involved| we all talk about we want strong schools but yet when it comes down to it people complain about it at home but they don TMt step up and do it.