REDUCTION IN HOURS : yet more cuts to the Library

          I assumed the budget cuts to the Library would stop at the Teacher Librarians being wiped out (High School District Fires All Librarians), but then all the Library Technicians got letters from the district saying our jobs "might" be affected.  Next thing you know, we all received yet ANOTHER letter giving us official notice that we're all being cut to 10 months.  I am currently an 11-month employee, so I will be losing an ENTIRE MONTH of pay.  Obviously this sucks Melvil Dewey's rotting balls.
          The letter itself is insulting because of wording like this:

"Because of budgetary restraints and workload changes..."
          -I have noticed no workload changes, at least not a DECREASE in work load.  I still have a lot of stuff to do all the time, and the library gets used more than ever.  Since I've been working in that library, we have INCREASED our circulation to about TEN TIMES what it was before.  I'm not exaggerating.

"...classified employees subject to layoff for lack of funds or lack of work..."

          -Lack of funds OR lack of work?!  They couldn't say it's DEFINITELY because of lack of funds, they had to leave it open-ended so it sounds like maybe we were just sitting around with our thumbs up our butts, with nothin' to do?

"Education Code... allows an employee to take a voluntary reduction in lieu of a layoff. You may elect to accept employment with a decrease in months..."

          -I love this.  It's so KIND of them to ALLOW me to take a "voluntary" reduction.  Apparently they aren't allowed to change your work hours without your consent, you have to be presented with an option.  So our option is either accept the reduction in hours, or be laid off.  The situation sucks all the way around, like a poop cake frosted with barf.  (Sorry.)
          Of course we're all checking the box that says we accept the reduction, and signing it, because what else are we gonna do?  I understand that cuts have to be made because things are financially grim, but they're already planning to re-instate some of the after-school sports programs they were pretending to cut, and I'm sure there are other areas that could be trimmed-- areas less vital to education than a fully-functioning school library.


          "RIF" stands for "Reduction In Force."  If you get "RIF'd" it means your school principal hands you a letter from the district saying that your position is likely to be cut the following school year.  There are plenty of times when RIF'd employees end up keeping their jobs because of improvements in a district's budget, but it's a serious warning.  The worse the economic situation is, the more likely it is that you really will be laid off.
          Today ALL 8 credentialed Librarians in our school district got RIF letters.  Our principal told the Librarian that if a certain tax initiative passes in June, then nobody gets laid off and it's back to status quo.  But if the initiative does NOT pass, then our district will ditch every single credentialed Librarian, leaving us Library technicians to run the libraries on our own.  Which will mean cutting a lot of the programs we do through the library because we just won't have the staffing for it.  No more book fairs, no more book clubs, no more library orientations, and less open hours overall.
          The Librarians get paid a lot (a LOT) more than Library techs, so why should I suddenly bust my ass even more than I already do for the same clerical pay, trying to do the work of two people?  If this cut really does come to pass, the district needs to feel the hurt of undervaluing its library staff.  If we Library techs are left without any support, why should we try to make it a seamless and painless transition?  If we do that, then the next thing you know they'll be cutting OUR hours, maybe cutting Library tech positions and making each remaining tech travel between multiple schools.
          I do not find it flattering when coworkers assure me that I'm capable of doing anything the Librarian is.  They say that because they WANT something from me.  If I'm that capable and appreciated, then whenever I do the job of the Librarian, I ought to get PAID the same as the Librarian.  But we're all (Librarians and Library techs) so busy desperately trying to prove our worth and justify our positions that we keep bending over backwards to show how awesome we are and how much we can do for everyone.  At some point our backs are going to break, man.  And nobody's going to thank us.  They're just going to be pissed off when they can't send their kids to the library.
          I think instead of waiting and hoping that tax initiative passes, we need to spread the word in our district that if they cut all our Librarians it will mean a very noticeable reduction in library services.  They cannot expect the CLERICAL library staff to continue doing our jobs AND pick up the slack of the credentialed Librarians for FREE.