10:49 am
Thu June 7, 2012

Seattle school counselors slam district over cuts

David Bilides, head counselor at Washington Middle School, gave school board members an earful over cuts that have left many colleagues out of work and 37 elementary schools without a counselor.
Gabriel Spitzer KPLU

Seattle school counselors say they’re getting hit harder than ever by budget cuts, and a pack of them turned out at Wednesday’s school board meeting to protest the latest round of layoffs.

It all stems from a change three years ago to how Seattle Public Schools funds counselors in elementary schools. The district stopped paying for them as regular employees, and instead gave schools a choice: use your discretionary money, or let them go. Now, almost two thirds of elementary schools don’t have a counselor, and the district has sent pink slips to a dozen counselors at middle-and high schools.

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