PLATTSBURGH — A large crowd of Clinton Community College students gathered on campus oval Wednesday to protest the planned layoff of 10 teachers and other staff.
Protesters waved signs bearing the names of various faculty members tagged for elimination in 2013-14 as some college employees looked on from the Moore Academic and Administration Building’s second-floor terrace.
“Do the math, save our staff,” students chanted, and “Layoffs are not a solution,” “We love our teachers,” and “We pay, it’s our say.”
People on the terrace cheered when one student screamed out, “Why can’t administration take a cut?”
Last month, Clinton Community College President John Jablonski announced that the college was planning to eliminate multiple faculty and staff positions for the 2013-14 academic year as a means of bridging a $600,000 budget gap it anticipates facing.
The cause of the deficit, Jablonski said at the time, was primarily a reduction of more than $800,000 in state aid over the past two years, about $225,000 of which was restored last spring, coupled with rising retirement and health-insurance costs.
Ten employees were notified last Friday that their positions would be cut at the end of the school year next spring.
Those who participated in the demonstration said they wished to show their support to those affected by the layoffs and felt it wasn’t right that teachers were losing their jobs.
“I’m trying to get the teachers back that got (laid off) that shouldn’t have, at least in my opinion,” CCC alum Mark Maddy told the Press-Republican during the protest.
“They can’t afford to have these professors and teachers, but they can afford construction projects, new vehicles for the college. They should be using it (the money) to support the teachers that bring in the money.”
In a separate interview, Jablonski noted that the college’s capital projects are separate from the annual operating budget.