The East Oakland school of the Arts at Castlemont is losing 22 percent of its positions next year, according to a new district report. Westlake Middle School, United for Success Academy, Sankofa Academy and Fred T. Korematsu Discovery Academy — to name a few — also plan to make deep staffing cuts that exceed their enrollment declines.
For the first time since Oakland adopted its controversial school-based budgeting system, the school district’s financial department has made public school-by-school reports. The one-page documents include projected changes in enrollment, revenues, spending and staffing levels. In other words, they show the effects of the state budget cuts and enrollment decline at the school level.
Photo Caption: “Due to budget constraints, ALL employees are expected to grow their own pencils.”
A word of caution when looking through these documents: Jason Willis, OUSD’s budget director, says the drop in income and spending from last year to this year looks bigger than it really is because more “carry over” money will likely be added to some of those categories in the fall.
A more reliable indicator? The change in staffing levels, which can be found in the lower right-hand corner under the box titled “Total Funded FTE.” Willis noted that school administrators normally cut everything possible before reducing staff, so that books and supplies will take a large hit (but not quite so large as it looks on the sheet).
Not all schools are cutting teachers and support staff. Edna Brewer Middle School expects to gain just 11 students, and to boost its staffing levels by 4.5 positions. ASCEND’s budget adds 3.4 positions.
Take a look for yourself, through the above link, and let us know what you find.
image from Scuzzi’s site at flickr.com/creativecommons