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      Parents, students beg TPS to save school programs

      Parents gave feedback on the proposed balanced budget

      Toledo Public Schools held another meeting with residents Thursday night as they look for feedback on how residents perceive the district's budget balanced.

      Facing the district's $30 million budget deficit, board members have proposed eliminating athletic programs, art and music programs as well as closing schools entirely.

      TPS board member Larry Sykes says he can understand the frustration that some people feel. Sykes says part of that frustration comes from people not knowing how the deficit came to be. Some of the $30 million deficit comes from money lost to charter schools, vouchers and building operating costs.

      Sykes says he believes TPS has failed to market the school districts prized programs to new parents and students. These are programs that are excellent and to have kids come here and they boast about something and if you let me go I don TMt know what I will do. I don TMt want to go anywhere else that TMs very emotional, [it TMs] a powerful statement for what we have done as a district.

      Other cuts proposed by TPS for the next academic year and their potential savings:Food service reductions ($1 million)Elimination of school crossing guards ($500,000)Elimination of school resource officers ($381,916)Closing of Toledo Technology Academy ($1,262,446)Closing of Toledo Early College High School ($1,390,982)Consolidation of Stewart Academy for Girls and Lincoln Academy for Boys ($344,211)Elimination of 34 teaching, six admin, and five clerical staff positions ($1,794,520)

      Over 40 people addressed the board Thursday night at Rogers High School in South Toledo. TPS Superintendent John Foley says he hopes to have two proposed budgets ready for board review on Tuesday, March 23.