Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Dear Readers: 

Los Angeles Unified School Superintendent sent this letter out to his staff. I decided it was just best to print all of it. If you have any comments, please email me at hartchap@cox.net. Sorry, but it doesn't seem like anything is getting better any time soon. This means we all must think out of the box on how to educate our students with -- a lot less. Diana

November 18, 2010
To All Employees                            
Re: Budget Realities
As truly harsh as this year has been, we balanced the 2010-2011 budget with negotiated give-backs and agreed-upon lay offs. The reality is that 2011-2012 will be an even more difficult year.  I have already planned to use the Federal Education Jobs Bill funds, $103 million, to save more than 2,000 jobs beginning July next year.  Here are the budget realities we currently face:
·               Current Deficit for 2011-2012:  Even with the inclusion of this Jobs Bill funding we are still facing an
ongoing deficit of $142 million (based on current projections).  To place this in context, this $142 million operating deficit represents a loss of over 3,300 jobs without ongoing furlough days-negotiable with all of our bargaining units-and spending cuts. 
·               Loss of Federal Stimulus Funding:  By the end of this year we will have spent the remaining Federal   
Stimulus funds (Title I and IDEA ARRA federal funds) that have been supporting at least 12,000 jobs (3,900 with Individuals with Disabilities Education Act; 3,200 with Title 1; and 5,200 with State Fiscal Stabilization Fund) over the last two years.  Almost all of these jobs are at school sites. These funds are gone at the end of this year and there is no replacement funding. 
·               State’s Budget Crisis:  Mid-November, the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) released a report projecting
a two-year $25 billion cumulative State deficit, including a projected $6 billion deficit for this year.   Given the State’s financial situation, it is likely we will face more cuts in addition to those outlined above.  We are also more vulnerable to mid-year cuts due to the already announced suspension of Proposition 98.   
Our daunting challenge: we have no choice but to continue to reduce ongoing costs to get through this crisis.  In the face of clear indications of a continued bleak budget picture, to use the one-time Federal Education Jobs Bill funds in the current year would be grossly irresponsible.  We are attempting to bring stability in these turbulent times.  If we don’t use these dollars in 2011-2012 to preserve jobs, then our problem becomes worse, not better.
Ramon C. Cortines
C:      Members, Board of Education
Jefferson Crain