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Tuesday

Increasing Clouds
Increasing Clouds
High: 90 °F
Low: 60 °F

Wednesday

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Patchy Fog
High: 86 °F
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Thursday

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Hart District Cancels All Graduations

khts_schools_chalkboardIn a move that has left many parents stunned, the Hart District has announced today that they are canceling all graduation ceremonies for schools in their district.

The decision comes in the wake of the cancellation of eighth-grade promotion ceremonies, which has junior high parents and students outraged.

"By canceling all graduation and promotion ceremonies for our schools we are able to save the district more than $3 million," said a Hart District representative, who asked to remain anonymous out of concern her flower gardens would be vandalized.

"I am truly appalled that this is the decision the district chose to make," said an outraged parent.  "These kids have worked their entire school career for this moment and they are just going to sell them down the river.  I heard that they are using the saved money to take all the principals on a Club Med vacation."

The claims that the saved money is being used for some sort of vacation may be valid.  KHTS recently found a draft of next year's budget for the district that slated more than $300,000 for sunscreen, tiny umbrellas, and bendy straws.

"Those expenses are necessary," said a District Spokeswoman Pat Willet, in response to the purchases.

But the cuts aren't all the district is enacting.  The district is working to shore up a growing budget gap over the next two years and has proposed a number of controversial cuts.

Set to be voted in their next meeting are:

  • Cutting all electricity for morning classes, and moving classrooms onto athletic fields for natural sunlight.
  • Mandatory school uniforms with advertisements sewn onto backs of shirts. Cigs for less has already submitted a bid to sponsor the Saugus soccer teams.
  • Cutting all tenth-grade classes and contracting students out to work for local businesses.  Examples of jobs include valet parkers, sanitation experts at construction sites, waste removal at local dog parks, and sign spinners for new housing developments.
  • Students may also be contracted out as rickshaws drivers to help ease our valley's traffic congestion and decrease our carbon footprint.
  • Instead of school rallys, students will be used as telemarketers to sell life insurance.  Part of a new venture the district has joined to raise additional funds.

"In case you haven't noticed I'm retiring at the end of this school year," said William S. Hart School District Superintendent Jaime Castellanos, in response to being asked about the proposed cuts.  "I could care less what they cut, just as long as I get my solid gold statue at Hart High."

In addition to the umbrellas, straws and sunscreen, the proposed budget also has a number of very controversial purchases.

They include:

  • 3,500 Snuggies
  • 60-inch LCD TVs for all Teacher's Lounges.
  • IPad's for all administrators
  • A underground monorail linking all high schools
  • $1.5 million on catering- money will install fondue fountains, provide lunch and brunch for all teachers.
    • Menu will include Kobe beef, champagne (lunch only), sushi, imported Belgium chocolate, and a salad bar for vegetarians.

It's not clear if all the proposed cuts and changes will be enacted, but it is clear that parents are not happy with the districts budget decisions, especially the fact that graduation is canceled indefinitely.

"You know, cutting school days, firing teachers and removing textbooks is one thing, but to cancel graduation is just well... its just wrong," said a West Ranch parent.

As with the district, KHTS has had to make some drastic cuts during this down economy.  **The poop and cigarette jokes in this story may seem tasteless, but the newly hired office monkey, Toto, is still learning the ropes.  He has replaced all the staff in the KHTS newsroom because of his ability to multitask with his hands and feet, and because he wears a diaper, which eliminates the need to take bathroom breaks.