Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Don't cut the YPT

I want to express my concern over the cuts at the Young People's Theater Group based at Kirk Community Center. The cuts will result in a two thirds budget cut and the loss of an extremely talented and committed teacher, Cassie Heropoulos. The group of people who make up the staff of the program work together like the organs in a body. Losing Cassie would be the equivalent of losing an organ in a living body. These cuts are effectively severing an artery and will severely impede the theater group as a whole. The cuts are short sighted and not in the interests of the YPT group, the children and the community it serves. The Young People's Theater group is the only one of its kind in the City of San Jose. It is open to all San Jose residents, is affordable and children are involved in programs which develop their whole character and build confidence. It succeeds where even schools often fail. It builds team players and consideration. It develops a sense of duty and commitment in the child, helping them become good citizens. It is not a program for the well off. It offers its program based on merit. While other programs continue to expand, for example the Senior Center at Kirk Community, (two newly created posts), and managerial posts are created at a cost of $120,000, this jewel of our community is about to hemorrhage. This program does not deserve a death by a thousand cuts and it is time to show how much this program is valued. It is time to show how much the staff are valued and appreciated. Their work is unique. The staff are unique. The program is a valuable asset to this community. It brings joy and excitement. The children involved in the program are allowed to shine and be part of something wonderful. The program is wonderful. The cuts must be re-thought. Cassie must stay. People need to know how wonderful she is with the children. The program needs Cassie. Without her the whole group is severely compromised and its future uncertain.
email your comments Councillor Judy Chirco, Tim McCullough