The East Hartford Gazette recently printed a letter to the editor from a concerned citizen of East Hartford, Conn., responding to the decision to lay off eight custodians from the Hartford Public School system. The following is an excerpt from that letter:

"...the elimination of these 8 custodians will have quite a severe impact on the upkeep of the school system. Somehow the negative impact of this decision seems to have been overlooked.

"The previous 71 members of the custodial staff were all diligent workers who worked long hours and took pride in their contributions of making the east Hartford Public School system a great place for students to grow and learn. Now, with the staff down to just 63 it is going to be impossible for the remaining custodians to maintain the superior image and high quality standard of cleanliness that we are all proud of.

"With 8 custodial positions eliminated, each of the remaining 63 custodians will have to cover an additional .38 acres of school grounds. Each custodian will pick up am additional 6,405 square feet of workspace and will be responsible for a total of 34,004 square feet!

"Each custodian will be responsible for supporting 2.14 additional staff members and 14.31 additional students.

"This represents a 23 percent increase in area of coverage.

"The elimination of 8 custodial positions is going to substantially increase the workload for the remaining 63. More work is going to create longer hours for the custodial staff which will costly the school system a lot more money in overtime pay. The more cost-effective alternative to excess overtime would be to simply keep the 8 janitorial positions that were eliminated."

The letter goes on to explain some of the janitorial responsibilities that may go overlooked if the layoff stands. To read more, click here.