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School board to consider budget cuts

Submitted by on 1, May 11, 2010 – 5:00 am4 Comments

The Alameda Board of Education is slated to consider some $2.7 million in budget cuts for the 2010-2011 school year – and an additional $4.3 million the district will make if the Measure E parcel tax doesn’t pass.

Even if Measure E does pass, the district will cut its budget by $2.7 million by raising K-3 class sizes to 24.94 students per teacher and ninth grade class sizes to 35 students per teacher, for a savings of $1,252,734; redesigning the district office for a savings of $460,154; freezing spending in “categorical” programs for a savings of $1 million; and eliminating a $10,000 stipend for the district’s gifted and talented education (GATE) program, all with board approval.

Without Measure E, the district could furlough its teachers for eight days, including five days, for a savings of $2,497,807 in 2010-2011. It would also cut funding for school counselors, library aides and teachers on special assignment; cut funding for textbooks and adult education; and eliminate some programs, including its GATE program. All told, those cuts would save the district an additional $4.3 million.

District staff will also talk about the money available in the district’s “categorical” programs, which include GATE, adult education, art and music, tutoring, professional development and more. The state is allowing school districts to use money slated for those programs to balance their budgets through the 2012-2013 school year, in the face of massive state funding cuts to education.

A public hearing on the district’s 2010-2011 budget would be held on June 22, the day the Measure E mail ballots are due. The school board would then vote on the budget on June 29.

Separately, the board is set to approve final layoff notices for 97 teachers and administrators (the list is in this packet at item F-9) and 33 “classified” staff, who include food service workers, paraprofessionals and the district’s technology director and webmaster.

School district staff will also give an update on the district’s high school exit exam results.

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