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San Diego School Board Hears Details Of First Pink Slip-Free Budget

— For the first time since 2008, San Diego Unified is planning to balance its budget without the possibility of staff layoffs.

Aired 2/20/13 on KPBS News.

San Diego Unified trustees will hear details of the district's budget planning at their Tuesday night meeting.

San Diego Unified schools are planning for a funding bump from Proposition 30 taxes of about $265 per student for the coming school year.

Even with the additional money, the district is planning to sell five pieces of property and institute a hiring freeze to close an $80 million budget gap. Superintendent Bill Kowba said selling property will give schools staffing stability for the first time in years – but it won’t solve the district’s long-term budget problems.

“We’re going to have to move away from one-time fixes into more permanent sustainable solutions for the budget," he said. "We think a combination of new revenue along with controlled expenditures and right-sizing the district to whatever changes of the future.”

The district projects property sales could bring in more than $60 million, while the remaining shortfall would be eliminated through staffing attrition.

Under the district’s plan, class sizes for kindergarten through third grade at most elementary schools would rise to 27 students per teacher from 24.

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