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Proposed 50 Million Dollar Budget Cut Raises Unanswered Questions

Hope Denison, Staff Writer

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   There is a proposed 50 million dollar budget cut to the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) for the 2018-2019 school year.

  SDUSD Union Representative Aaron Pores explained, “The state is balancing their budget but at the cost of the school districts.”

   Principal Jeff Olivero said, “The state is giving less money so the burden is now more heavy in the school districts.”

   Olivero continued, “It’s complicated, but it’s tied to pensions, which is a retirement package. The question is who pays for the retirement. In the past, what happened was the district put a certain amount of money into a bucket and the state put a certain amount of money into that bucket. This could eventually be used by that person when they retire.”

    Pores  continued, “The state, feeling the crunch of not having enough money, said we will leave it up to the school districts; so the districts must determine the cuts.”

  Olivero added, “So when you come to the table to pay for schools and people’s books, you’re dealing with less money than what you once had. Coupled with lower enrollment, this creates a shrinking budget with still too many people on the payroll.”

   Pores stated, “Staff department budgets are so low that we even have to write a grant for a printer cartridge.”

   “The question is how do you decide what to get rid of or what programs to get rid of, and who’s to decide that? People are upset, because everyone could be impacted in one way or another,” commented Olivero.

   Olivero said, “By June, the state legislatures and the governor have to agree to the budget, meaning how much will schools get.”

   Pores added, “I would expect the district to do what we always do, which is lay off a lot of people. Then we would have to fight them on it, because there is obviously a need for teachers.”

   English teacher Elizabeth Frohoff said, “I’m pretty sure that part of their budget plan will be to possibly lay off teachers and cut programs.”

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Proposed 50 Million Dollar Budget Cut Raises Unanswered Questions