11 people laid-off; Tulare City School District

TULARE, Calif.

The superintendent of the Tulare City School says this year he had to lay off 11 people.

Class sizes will be slightly bigger at Tulare City Elementary and middle schools this fall. That's due to a half-million dollar budget deficit and the state mandate on migrant aid programs.

Tulare City School Superintendent Luis Castellanoz says the new mandates have strict requirements for how funding can be used for farmworker families.

Castellanoz said, "We can no longer utilize migrant funding for classified positions we did have to lay off 8 migrant instructional staff members."

Of the eight, two will be retiring. Three have already been placed in other positions. The program provides extra instructional help to children whose parents are farmworkers.

Castellanoz said, "I personally was a migrant student myself growing and when you can provide migrant children who by the nature of their parents work are following the crops and have tendency to miss school or start school late."

Castellanoz says the district will now be using the program money to start a preschool for migrant families.

Castellanoz said, "Hiring migrant preschool teachers to meet the needs of the children to give them a head start so when they start kindergarten they have that migrant preschool experience."

Tulare city schools also had to lay off three library aids. Five other library aids will get their hours reduced.

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