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San Diego City Schools Finalize Budget Cuts

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Aired 6/29/11

San Diego city schools won’t get a reprieve from $114 million in budget cuts for the coming year This is the fourth year of funding decreases for the district.

— Members of San Diego Unified’s Board of Education made a decision none of them relished Tuesday night. They committed to more than $114 million in cuts for the next school year, including more than 700 teacher layoffs.

Teachers, parents, students and administrators have testified at Board of Education meetings since March about how budget cuts will hurt their schools. Some held up signs asking for restoration of the district's Community-Based English Tutoring program at a meeting earlier this year.
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Above: Teachers, parents, students and administrators have testified at Board of Education meetings since March about how budget cuts will hurt their schools. Some held up signs asking for restoration of the district's Community-Based English Tutoring program at a meeting earlier this year.

Class sizes will also increase for Kindergarten, second and third graders. Also on the district's 34-item list of cutbacks were reductions to physical education and health programs, elimination of central office positions, decreases in magnet program funding and the scaling back of landscapers on district campuses.

“This board is very, very aware that passing this budget is going to cause great damage to our schools in San Diego in terms of the class sizes, in terms of doing away with programs, in terms of not having people in the front office,” said John Lee Evans, vice president of the board.

Despite four years of cuts the district is already looking at a projected shortfall of almost $91 million for next year. Measures the district is considering to close that looming gap include closing and consolidating up to 10 schools, further central office reductions and selling district-owned properties.

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