FUSD could face more cuts

FRESNO, Calif.

While classrooms of teachers and students in the Fresno Unified School District go about the business of learning, a funding crisis simmers among administrators and the teacher's union.

"We're not staying we're not going to step up to the plate, like I said we've already made salary cuts, done furlough days," Greg Gadams said.

This is the problem, if voters in June approve tax extensions, then Fresno Unified will only need to make $27 million in cuts.

If it doesn't the need jumps to $71 million leaving FUSD facing teacher layoffs who legally must be notified of that possibility by March 15.

In addition, the district's plan is to increase the size of K-3rd grade classrooms.

"I don't want to raise class sizes in K-3. I have a child going in to 1st grade. I mean this is all very personal for all of us," FUSD Superintendent Michael Hanson said.

On Wednesday the school board will take up this issue in earnest.

And the union has a choice it wants the board to consider: eliminate the jobs of 'teachers' who are not actually teaching kids.

"Two hundred and fifty of them. They don't work in classrooms. What we'd like to see is those positions put back in the classroom/protecting the classrooms first over a lot of support positions for District administrators," Greg Gadams said.

That says Hansen will not add to the total number of teachers or change the outcome of more kids in every classroom.

"They are actually a teacher who needs a place to be and they will replace that teacher who is less senior ...We're gonna keep focusing on the fact we're got to share the responsibility and share the pain and keep our kids at the center of the conversation."

The district and the union do agree one thing.

In this new world, children need the best education possible to meet the challenges ahead.

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