96 full-time Turlock school teachers and 32 certified administrators will be getting pink slips following the Turlock Unified School District (TUSD) Board of Trustees’ 7-0 vote at the Board Meeting held on Tuesday night.
Most school districts around the area and state have already made cuts. TUSD has always had a good reserve balance above the State of California’s 3 percent requirement for Turlock’s size. TUSD had a reserve of $11 million is using $4 million from the reserve this year to cover their deficit.
Turlock schools are facing an estimated $6.5 million short fall for the 2009-10 $120 million budget due to the economy and state education cuts.
Many different ways to save money have been discussed throughout the year. Salary cuts, larger class room sizes, cutting programs, shortening the school year by 5 days, cutting teachers, and cutting administrators have all been brought up in public meetings.
There was a “golden handshake” proposal on the table that offered $20,000 or an additional 2 years of service credit towards retirement. TUSD needed 40 people to take the deal for this to work but only 22 said that they would. The proposal was pulled.
Ultimately, Turlock School Trustees appeared to have no choice but to make the tough and undesired decision to cut 96 teachers and 32 certified administrators.
Pink slips have to be sent out by March 13, 2009 to give 45 day layoff notice mandated by state law.
The 96 teachers (72 of which are elementary school teachers) and 32 certified administrators (including all deans and assistant principals) will be given pink slips as a 45 day layoff notice to be implemented in May, but do not mean they will necessarily be laid off for sure.
The TUSD Board of Trustees can decide to take other courses of action from now until May and give them the chance to not implement all or some of the layoffs.