Uploaded: Thu, Jun 25, 2009, 5:43 pm
Schools keep small classes for one more year
District's 2009-10 budget maintains teacher jobs
Despite the ongoing fiscal uncertainty at the state level, members of the San Ramon Valley Unified School District on Tuesday gave their unanimous approval to a $215.5 million budget that will keep class sizes stable for another year and maintain the jobs of more than 200 teachers faced with layoffs.
Board members met June 23 to discuss the spending plan which, even with cuts throughout a number of areas, will still outstrip projected revenues by slightly more than 8 percent.
Assistant Superintendent of Finance Gary Black presented the budget to board members, explaining that with so few solid numbers coming from the state, any assumptions they make are little better than speculation. "There are many unanswered questions and many assumptions that we just won't know for months," he explained.
The most recent revision of the budget in Sacramento shows funding to SRVUSD reduced by $17.9 million, a loss of roughly $655 per pupil.
One-time federal dollars from the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act as well as the recent approval of Measure C will help offset some of the deficit in the spending plan but the district still will have to take $5.5 million from its reserves in order to fund the budget.
This will leave just over $13 million in reserves for the coming year. Black said of that amount, $6.6 million is the state mandated 3 percent reserve, $2.1 million is listed as the board's reserve, and the rest is set aside for several different funds.
Under the budget, class sizes for K-3 and ninth-grade math will stay at the 20:1 for the coming school year but are expected to increase to 24:1 in the following year. Of the 240 teachers who received layoff notices in March, all but three part-time positions have been rescinded.
Employee salaries and benefits account for over 80 percent of the school district budget. The newly approved budget carries a $1 million increase for step and column raises for teachers. Conversely, teachers will be asked to take two unpaid furlough days in 2009-10, three in 2010-11 and four in 2011-12. Those concessions have yet to be approved by the California Teachers Union.
The situation remains fluid at the state level, which could be good or bad for the district. Black pointed to a current plan in Sacramento to cut down the $24 billion state deficit by nearly $20 billion. He added that there is word that there could be Cost Of Living Adjustments (COLA) of 0.9 percent in 2009-10 and 2.4 percent in 2010-11 that could also result in some additional revenues to help offset the continuing drain on local coffers.
Black said while they are hopeful of seeing the Cost Of Living Adjustments, they are creating their plans based on a flat revenue stream. "That's really our best case scenario at this point, hoping to survive on a flat basis."
Posted by Rick
a resident of Danville
on Jul 2, 2009 at 10:17 am
Oooh you guys are so tough. You have me quakin' in my boots. Oh, you're right. All I do is sit in a basement. Oh, it makes my little heart quiver to think I may actually have to face people in public. Ooooh, so scawy.
I've not once accused anyone of being a loser who "sits behind a computer screen" just because they're my opponents and they happen to be using this particular method (blogging via computer) at the moment. Yet, that's what all you tough guys have thrown at me and those on my side. Then, you wonder why I get pissed. I'm glad you wanna meet me. You will get your wish.
Rob, you completely missed my point. I'm tired of the classes catering to stupid people who genuinely are bad kids. I was mildly rebellious and could've easily been brought into line if the teachers actually considered me worth it, and those like me. But, no, they hated the smart rebellious kid while working the whole class around the morons who called attention to themselves during class all the time. This point is nuanced, which you obviously don't understand. Also, larger class sizes DO NO have to cater to the middle. No more than smaller class sizes right now have to pander to the bottom, as they do.
Rylan Fuchs was murdered, shot by a little coward who jumped out of the bushes and shot him in the back of the neck, right below the head, so forgive me for not being specific enough.
Rob, you are way too passionate in trying to keep a lid on this child's murder. And he was murdered. You're not fooling anyone. The little thug hasn't been caught yet, because he ran off to Oakland where he belongs, but the little bastard had the nerve to text Rylan's friends immediately after the murder saying "you play with fire and you'll get burnt."
Rob, maybe one day your conscious will actually get to you, knowing that you did all in your power to make sure people didn't angry over a child's murder, knowing you did everything you could to demean the tragedy. I hope you feel great about yourself when you try to argue utter lies, such as we don't know if a murder took place. No, you're right, Rylan was shot in the back of the neck by a stray bullet. Not even Johnny Cochran would stoop so low as to make the arguments you do. I look very much forward to meeting you rob, such a tough guy in my town who has taken such a passion in toning down children's murders, and looks upon with such anger and hate people like me who will not tolerate such things.
On a final note, what could I possibly gain from just walking into town council by myself. I need to organize at least a hundred people to storm in there, with media. This takes time, but we are patient. I happen to know through my channels that town council is already talking about me and those like me, who have been making a stink on this blog and through other means. But, our town right now is run by people who don't care about Rylan. So, we're gonna make them care.
Rob, Teacherman, why don't you announce your whole names right now on this blog, if you wanna accuse people of being cowards for not doing so. Why don't you state where you work, if you wanna accuse me of hiding in a hole, or a basement, when you could just as easily be doing so. And why don't you tell me when, on the average, you attend town council meetings or where else I might be able to find you.
You two peons are threatened by me because you know this town and whole country is changing. The tea parties are just the beginning. You know that the more people who are not afraid to speak their minds against worthless, traitorous, chest-bumping, stinkin liars like you, the more your little ugly world comes crashing down. We're not afraid anymore to say we don't want group homes brought in here if there's such a significant chance that we're bringing in child-killers. We're not afraid to say that teachers are not demigods, above the pale of insult. We're not afraid to say illegals are sucking this country dry. We're not afraid to say that, for lack of a better word, "libs" are on the side of the parasites, the destructive, the ugly.
We're not afraid to carry guns to protect our families and town from little gangbangers.
In summation, kiss my a**