Budget Cuts

As of the June 16 School Board Meeting –

The Governor’s budget called for reductions of $219/student in the current 2008/09 school year or $7,296,246 and reductions of $353/student or $11,699,574 in 2009/10 and beyond. After this, the Governor announced a 65% reduction to transportation resulting in the loss of another $1,832,000 per year. This loss of funding required a reduction of the budget for the next three years by over $43million.

Cuts include the follow:

  • Loss of class-size reduction in grades 1-3 and 9th grade math and english
  • Loss of 4th grade music
  • Loss of 5th grade music beginning 2010-11 school year
  • Loss of middle and high school librarians
  • Loss of all high school sports funding
  • Loss of one VP at every high school
  • Loss of favorite teachers
  • and much more…..
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3 thoughts on “Budget Cuts

  1. The move to lower graduation requirements is a concern. The board references that reducing graduation requirements will allow those on the UC/CS track to take classes at other places like DVC. The problem is that those classes are already filled. Also, did you know, that DVC is on probation? What’s interesting is that there are options out there such as BYU’s independent study program, that will allow our students to earn college credit while improving their GPA’s. They also offer high school classes to mend grades. The problem is that the MDUSD district won’t accept these classes. If they are going to take away our options, they should provide us new ones. Our children need to remain competitive in their education and these types of programs accomplish that task. As hard as it is to get into good colleges today, the district should consider changing their policy to allow programs such as these to help our students. Options are good and our students deserve them.

  2. John,

    I could not agree more and I too am a strong advocate for approval of distance learning options for our kids. School districts across the country have provided this option to their students, some even require a distance learning class in order to graduate. The MDUSD board approved one distance learning class last year with a 5-0 vote and strong comments of support from every member of the board. However, while the road blocks to any kind of REAL implementation of a distance learning program are great, the bigger problem is a lack of strategic planning.

    The MDUSD board relentlessly pursued Gary McHenry for his lack of strategic planning. Two years later there is still no plan. As our district leadership makes serious cuts to programs, summer school, and staff positions it becomes ever so clear that strategic planning is essential.

    In addition, our district is pursuing a bond measure this June to raise $348,000,000 for facility improvements. Shouldn’t we, as major stakeholders, be concerned that there is no strategic plan for this district? How can they upgrade technology and at the same time cut tech support? How can they eliminate options like summer school and electives for students but not allow distance learning opportunities? How can they purchase new technology like SmartBoards but cut staff development? As parents and community members we should demand better planning from those responsible for educating our children.

    With planning, our district would have the opportunity to look to real innovation and reform, like distance learning, to help ease the burden these cuts have put on our schools and our students.

  3. Strategic planning is a critical component in every organization. The question for MDUSD is what outcomes are they attempting to achieve. If the goal is to meet state standards, then those students who desire an education which keeps them competitive with other students throughout the country will not be achieved. According to Greg Smith, Associate Vice-President of enrollment at Cal State East Bay, 20% of freshmen with a 4.0 or higher need some degree of remedial math, English, or both. College admissions has become significantly more competitive and MDUSD needs to keep those students in mind as well.

    If MDUSD insist on teaching state standards, students who want to attend a top University are left in a difficult position. Those deficiencies are often reflected in lower SAT scores and fewer college options. Counseling at our schools has been reduced to substandard levels which reflects the districts priorities. For parents and students who want to remain competitive in the college admission process, they may have to look to the private sector for help. It is what you don’t know that sometimes makes the difference. If you get a chance, check out http://www.collegetrackservices.com.

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