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5/7/2012 6:00:00 AM
The $12 million Kingman Unified School District blunder that never happened
Rumors that KUSD is firing teachers, cutting salaries to make up for $12 million mistake are false
Wanda Hubbard
Wanda Hubbard

Ahron Sherman
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - Rumors floating around that Kingman Unified made a $12 million accounting blunder and is in the process of firing teachers and cutting salaries to make up for it are completely false.

When the Miner contacted KUSD Finance Director Wanda Hubbard about the alleged mistake, she was shocked.

"I don't know what these people are talking about," Hubbard said. "I don't know if it's even possible to make a $12 million accounting error."

Instead of dismissing the accusation, Hubbard looked for reasons people might think that an error occurred. She started with the argument that because of the blunder, KUSD was scrambling to make up the difference by firing teachers and cutting salaries.

First, she looked at the cutting-salaries accusations. Historically, teachers get paid for 184 days of work, but during this school year, they received 185 days of work, Hubbard said. One day was added this year for training on new district accounting software, she said.

Now, for the 2012-2013 school year, the number of days teachers are paid for will be back at 184.

This is not cutting salaries, Hubbard said. It's merely dropping the days back to where they've always been, she added.

One of the ways KUSD elected to deal with its budget deficit and the need to cut $2 million a year over the next two years was to increase classroom sizes throughout the district by two to four students apiece. The way you accomplish that is with reductions in force, Hubbard said.

However, KUSD deals with a lot of turnover every year, and because of that, Hubbard would be surprised if anyone loses their job.

Though district staff tries to find out how many teachers plan to leave the district, not all of them know right now or are ready to commit to leaving. But the reduction in force letters needed to go out because teacher contracts needed to go out now as well, explained KUSD Human Resources Director Chris Nutt.

Recently, 17 reduction in force letters were sent out to certified staff (teachers) and seven to classified staff (assistants). Those layoffs alone could account for about $600,000 in savings for the district, Nutt said. This amount of savings does not account for benefits or teachers leaving, Nutt said.

Still, as teachers leave KUSD of their own accord, teachers who received reduction in force letters get brought back into the fold.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, May 11, 2012
Article comment by: uturly disgusted

our district is so good at covering up stuff . last year my kid almost got smacked and was called foul names by a teacher and maybe he should not get his contract renewed agian for next year maybe it is time to get some new teachers and staff maybe the teachers right out of collage mite do a better job what ever happend to honesty and integrity and the golden rule

Posted: Thursday, May 10, 2012
Article comment by: Mrs. McGuillicuty

To recoup $12 million the district would have to RIF 429 teachers at the new-hire, $28k/year rate.

...and they still can't afford to buy textbooks?

...and class sizes may go up 10% next year?

...those three new school buildings sure look nice!

Posted: Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Article comment by: Donna W.

The real fiscal mistake is spending $500K per year on grass at an empty school (Lee Williams) but forcing Mt Tipton to cut $300K per year that is actually used for teaching!

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: Kingman Resident need to read the KUSD board agenda for 5/8/2012. There is the list of reduction in force. We also have many administrators and teachers who are retired and double dipping (some over ten years). Do they care about the new young fresh teacher out of college having a job..NO!! This district has a serious problem in their finances (so much waste) and I have to agree that we need an outside audit. Remember they spent all the bond money for a new elementary school that is used for pre-school and now we want to open the high school. If they are reducing teachers in other schools, than how are they going to fill the positions at Lee Williams HS. FYI....there was no reduction in force in District Office!!

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: Quiet Storm

My wife is a teacher.Yes the schools are rifting teachers, the number of kids are increasing in the classrooms and the teachers are getting paid less for doing more. If increasing class size is not doing more for less, then the school board must be using some kind of modern math. On the otherhand, The district offices have to do something to make sure the people in the district office get their pay raises. A secretary in any of the schools without, re: withOUT a degree gets paid more that a teacher does to educate our children. Teachers in Kingman are definitely underpaid and overworked and each year it just keeps getting worse. Thank you very much Roger Jacks.

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: KUSD Teacher

The real blunder lies in the fact that the Board voted to open a school that KUSD simply cannot afford.

This disastrous decision will result in layoffs (both certified and classified), increased class sizes, and a continuation of the pay freeze--five years at present--for years to come.

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: d l

Well then, if there's a legitimate concern that $12 million is missing then the school board has an obligation to notify the FBI because $12 million doesn't just fall between the sofa cushions in the faculty break room! I'm kinda getting sick of this nonsense that's allowed to slide around here. Between the school board, plea bargains for serious crimes and chronic allegations of abuse and misconduct at the hands of the MCSO, some outside agency needs to be called in immediately to start investigating the whole damn place because it increasingly sounds like corruption is running amok!

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: fire them

The district made no accounting error.We have always been paid correctly. They are pulling some kind of scam on the employees. I think that the district office needs to have an outside firm or state regulatory people come in and find out what is so screwed up with them. We employees should not be asked to work for free.7d8v45

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: Jonathon Walker

I'm pretty sure that if there was a "$12,000,000" accounting error we would all know about it. Not only that but you would need to do a lot more than just lay off employees and cut salaries to make up for it or hide it. There is too much accountablity for such a thing to happen

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: Cover Up reigns

I don't for a second believe a word that comes ot of the mouthes of ANY person of the KUSD Board. A school in Golden Valley had its volunteer books audited in 2009. The conclusion, and it documented, there was a sunstantial amount of money missing and unaccounted for according to the forensic audit completed. when the issue was addressed to the school administration and to the school board, their first reaction was to cover it up because they did not ant to tarnish the image of the school in question nor did the principal want her image destroyed. Their solution, to try to pass blame elsewhere and coverup the situation. So if the district can cover up something as small as this, I know they will lie and cover up this also

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: John Grace

The cuts are happening with the classified staffing,(Teacher aids,Grounds,Janitorss)
And to top it off,apparently in a letter sent to
employees,The district has been pro rating 1 week of salary for the fiscal year for God knows how long and to close out the year,,employees
Will have to work that last week of the fiscal year with know pay to make up their accounting Blunder!
That pay period ends the following week which means they go without pay from 6-23-2012 to 7-13-2012 and get paid for 1 week!
The District is scraping and pulling teeth to get this Lee williams open which according to community growth patterns is un sustanable
Who are they Kiddig

Posted: Monday, May 7, 2012
Article comment by: What the Heck is going on?

The good old boys took it!!!

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