CPS employee speaks out after being laid off

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - The layoffs at Chicago Public Schools are hitting home for 227 employees who got their pink slips Friday.

As she sat in her home getting ready for dinner, Rana Donaldson reflected on walking out of headquarters for the last time.

“It was kinda weird because I was like, oh wow, I'm not gonna actually be here anymore,” Donaldson said.

After 15 years working as a financial analyst for the district, Donaldson said she was not shocked at getting laid off because her bosses gave her a heads up last summer and again just before the holidays that this might happen. But she and others described a very sad day saying goodbye to many long time colleagues.

“Very low morale, a lot of tears, a lot of embracing,” Donaldson said.

The layoffs included various staff jobs in almost every department, from those making as little as $31,000, all the way up to a manager taking home $165,000 a year.

CEO Forrest Claypool said the layoffs were aimed at protecting the classroom, but the ripple effect will still be felt there according to Donaldson, whose job was to handle requisitions and purchase orders for building repairs.

“When you lay off a person like me and other people that are doing this responsibility, that's gonna delay work to get done in the schools,” she said.

Donaldson, who has her masters, said she has already started networking and is not worried about finding that next job. On the wall in her dining room is a stencil that reads, “Pray about everything, worry about nothing,” which is just what she’s doing.

“One door closes another door opens, so I'm grateful,” Donaldson said.

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