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Budget breakdown for Oakland schools

Image from batega's photostream at flickr.com/creativecommonsThe Oakland school board will be asked on Wednesday to pass a budget with 505 fewer full-time positions (about 10 percent) and deep reductions in almost every department and program, particularly adult education and early childhood education.

The total budget for the 2010-11 school year is $558 million, about 16 percent smaller than it was last year. The district would cut a total of $78 million from its general fund, including $22 million in general purpose dollars, and $110 total under this proposal.

A separate item (Pages 6-7) authorizes the layoffs of 38 full-time adult education teaching and administration positions and 19.5 support staff jobs, as well as 93 full-time positions in — or related to — early childhood education.

Here’s the kicker: The cuts outlined in the budget proposal won’t even erase the district’s structural deficit. The administration still plans to use about $16 million of one-time funds — including the last of the state loan — to balance the budget. Without those funds, Chief Financial Officer Vernon Hal says, the district would need to cut cut $38 million in general purpose funds (instead of $22 million) and $126 million overall (instead of $110 million).

You can find a link to the presentation — which has loads of detail and year-to-year comparisons — on page 14 of the agenda, under “2010-2011 Fiscal Year District Budget.” It’s too large of a file for me to upload, sorry. You can find the agenda here.

Katy Murphy

Education reporter for the Oakland Tribune. Contact me at kmurphy@bayareanewsgroup.com.

  • Nextset

    What people should be worrying about is December mid-year “corrections” and the next year budget. These cuts may go on for some time. The reason is the fact that CA is fundamentally unsound financially & politically. You cannot destroy so much industry & production while expanding government payrolls and welfare schemes and not face severe cuts. When we really have problems it will feel much worse than it does now. That day is expected to come sometime later.

    The only thing the public schools can do (when the true crisis hits) is eliminate whole classes of service such as Adult Ed and Kindergarten, Automate teaching and increase class size to unprecedented levels, and finally terminate compulsory education and end service to more and more classes of students (ie 11th and 12th grade). We also need to limit services to the disabled to reasonable dollar limits.

    It doesn’t matter what we want, if there is no money this is what is going to happen and not long off, either. Schooling is an optional service that comes after public safety, roads, power and water, etc.

    The true crisis is not here yet. We may yet think of these times as “good” times. We would do well to start planning for severe cutbacks. This is not the “severe cutbacks” I envision, they will arrive in 12 to 60 months.

  • Hot R

    I agree Nextset. Adult education, ROP, small schools or academies, sabbaticals, teachers on leave,reduced class sizes, after school programs, continuing education, continuation schools, more than one janitor per school, stipends for coaches, play for free sports, and many other staples of education are now “extras.” This will mean much higher drop out rates, and an increase in residential burglaries (not such good timing with police being laid off too).

    One disagreement: Compulsory education will not be ended, and learning disabled programs are a legal mandate.

    Let the redesign begin. Online classes, larger lecture classes for high school students, partnerships with local universities and businesses which MUST now step into the void an end to seniority and tenure. Don’t look for any help from the City of Oakland, which is also facing financial Armagedon.

    Leaner and meaner or just meaner?

  • Cranky Teacher

    Pay now (education, early child development, health care) or pay later (crime, prisons, weaker economy, increased health care costs).

    And why would the schools ask the City of money? Schools never get money or direction from cities.

    Doesn’t keep the EBay woman from attacking Jerry Brown over Oakland schools.

    Although, Jerry did pack the school board with some dopey members when he expanded it…

  • harlemmoon

    Actually, some schools do indeed receive money from the cities in which they’re located. One need only look across the pond to see that San Francisco and the school district have (or at least had) such an agreement. There, at least, the city acknowledges the benefits of education and its role in lending a hand to assure its children receive an education.
    And in NYC the entire school system was taken over by the city. And guess what? Most reports indicate that the new controls aren’t half bad.
    Whatever happens in Oakland it is clear that it cannot continue on this path. It’ll be interesting to watch the tumult that occurs when so many lose their jobs, are bumped or simply quit in the days ahead.

  • TheTruthHurts

    While I hope CA doesn’t get to Greece status as Nextset predicts, we are certainly on that path. The main ingredient allowing this to happen is DENIAL!!!

    If the public wants to avoid the crime and lack of productivity that Cranky mentions, it will have to step up and PAY FOR IT. Ounce of prevention . . . If they/we don’t pay for it, they will get what they have coming.

    While union rules across the country have exacerbated the problem, it is still just a fundamental question of what is more important – the money in your pocket or the service you can buy with that money. The state is us. The country is us. The public will decide and unfortunately, they’re going to have to decide while the money in their pockets is shrinking (siphoned off by international banks and corporations).

    If we avoid Greece, it’ll likely be because we’ve established a new social contract that redefines the contributions made by those who’ve received the spoils of capitalism along with those who take from the system without obligation to provide.

  • ‘Merican Dream

    San Francisco is a city AND County, so they have special rules governing thier school district. They don’t have a “county” to report to because they are one and the same.

  • Jesse James

    Katy–do you have any news about last night’s meeting? Was everything approved?

  • Katy Murphy

    The board unanimously approved the cuts to adult ed, but it’s holding a special meeting next Tuesday, 6/29, to pass the final budget.

  • Jesse James

    Thank you Katy. I only subscribe to the Trib for you! I work in OUSD but don’t really know anything that happens because communication is so limited. Did you know Tony Smith has never met with teachers as a whole? He has never come to our school when it was in session. I feel like I see him less and know less than when we were under the state administrators. All this to say, thank you for being there–and for being impartial as well.

  • Katy Murphy

    Thanks for your nice note, Jesse James. I’m glad to be of service!

    Interesting question about Smith. Do you remember the last time an Oakland superintendent or state administrator held a meeting with teachers across the district?

  • harlemmoon

    Maybe Smith could smile and shake hands with teachers as they head out the door for their next strike??

  • ILoveTeachers

    When was the last time all of the teachers got together in one room for anything? Not even a strike vote could bring out more than 30% of them… I don’t blame Tony for that, but it’s definitely an opportunity waiting to happen.

  • geteducated

    harlemmoon:
    A strike will send the message to parents loud and clear that the students are NOT the priority. It will tell parents who are struggling in these tough times that a teacher pay increase or COLA is more important than thier child. Parents are sick of reading how bad the teachers have it in the same papers that they are reading to try to pick up more hours or find a job. The unions are feeding the teachers a line the community as a whole will not swallow.
    Tough times.

  • anon

    I have to agree with Geteducated. My salary has been cut but I’m still expected to do the same amount of work, and my husband’s company is starting furloughs next month. We both don’t get fully-paid health coverage or a pension. In fact, we both have advanced degrees for “prestigous positions” and our net salary works out less than a teacher gets at OUSD for the same years of experience, after considering all the benefits (medical, dental, pension, etc.) teachers recveive.

    Both of our children’s teachers don’t want to strike (and didn’t strike in the spring), because THEY GET IT-times are tight for all, and we can’t get blood from a stone. They think that Tony Smith’s offer of a slight raise is more than fair, considering the situation. We feel lucky to have work, and the teachers should too right now.