May 19, 2011
Two-Thirds of PA Schools Expect Layoffs
Two thirds of Pennsylvania school districts plan to lay off instructional staff next school year, and more than 7 in 10 expect to cut instructional programs, according to a survey conducted by the Pennsylvania Association of School Business Officials (PASBO) and the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators (PASA).
Facing a $1.232 billion statewide reduction in government aid, 86% of districts say class size will increase, 71% will cut elective courses, 64% will eliminate tutoring, 51% will drop summer school and 31% will cut all-day kindergarten. The reduction includes cuts of $654 million in federal stimulus funds and $578 million in state funds.
“The cuts threaten to reverse one of the signal accomplishments of the previous decade — the steady improvement in the achievement levels of Pennsylvania’s public-school students,” said a news release accompanying the survey results.
“Pennsylvania was the only state to consistently improve student achievement in reading and math every year from 2002 through 2008, according to the Center for Education policy, and the percentage of school districts making adequate yearly progress rose from 62 percent in 2005 to 95 percent in 2010.”
The survey was sent in April to all 500 of Pennsylvania's school districts. Responses were received from 263 districts (52.65) across the state.