Hamburg School Board members Tuesday night reinstated two high school extracurricular clubs that had been cut due to budget woes.
The board action came after two students asked the board to save their clubs, but the board had already planned to reinstate the Drama Club and Writers Guild.
That was unclear to the public, however, since it was included in “personnel changes” on the agenda that were not made public before or during the meeting.
“More and more today, our classes are being cut, our teachers are being cut, our clubs are being cut. We are losing our creativity,” said high school student Lydia Williams. “You are taking away our teachers, our electives, our clubs, our ability to speak, our ability to perform, our ability to write.”
She said the loss of clubs and electives “reflects on us,” and she presented the board a binder full of letters from students, in hopes that “the voices of so many of us” would make a difference.
High school student Ben Kubik said he learned that the Writers Guild had been on the chopping block.
“This club means so much to its members,” he said.
Board members appointed faculty advisers for the two clubs, effectively reinstating the clubs. Later in the meeting, the board considered a proposal by board member Sally Stephenson to reinstate the Drama Club, Writers Guild, Peace Club and Environmental Club.
Superintendent Steven A. Achramovitch said representatives of the two clubs that were reinstated met with the high school principal and himself, and he said that was the proper procedure to go through to reinstate extracurricular activities.
“None of us like the idea of any of these clubs being cut,” added board President Joan Calkins.
Achramovitch said the two clubs would be added by reallocating funds within the high school budget. Stephenson’s resolution had called for taking $4,000 from the contingency fund to pay for the club advisers.
Stephenson withdrew her resolution and urged the members of the Peace and Environmental clubs to meet with the principal and superintendent, and tell them why the clubs should be reinstated.
Also Tuesday, parents of fifth-graders at Boston Valley Elementary asked that another section be added because there are 25 students in one section and 26 in another, above the district’s guideline calling for 25 students in a class. Board members and the superintendent promised to revisit the numbers and possible solutions.
The board also appointed Julie Gajewski assistant principal at Union-Pleasant Elementary School. Gajew- ski is the data coordinator and teacher on special assignment for the Grand Island Central School District.