Meeting to show where ax will fall | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Meeting to show where ax will fall

William Ferchland, Tahoe Daily Tribune

After months of meeting with the community, spending $15,000 for a district analysis and keeping updated on the state budget crisis, the Lake Tahoe Unified School District will announce its decisions for roughly $2.7 million worth of cuts.

The district has been caught in a tailspin with declining enrollment in its fifth year and a crippling state budget shortfall estimated at $35 million.

In all, next year’s estimated revenue shortfall is $1.7 million, while the number is expected to grow in the future while the district will prepare for a $1 million loss from state funding.

The district will also bring forth a multiyear plan to help deal with declining enrollment. The plan was described as flexible by Superintendent Diane Scheerhorn, since outcomes of the state budget remain unknown.

The meeting will begin at 5 p.m. with public comment before the five member school board and education officials go into closed session to meet with labor negotiators. The board will reconvene in open session about 5:30 p.m. and vote on reductions in programs as well as intentions to dismiss certified and classified employees.

In response to the financial struggles, a group of community members have recently formed Citizens Financial Advisory Committee. The group’s mission is to provide a community voice to LTUSD.

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“Unlike the teachers and classified employees unions, there was no existing way to collect our community’s views, focus them and then communicate those views to the school district,” said member Karsen Garrett. “CFAC can help the district get a handle on community priorities so they can be factored into the decision making process.”

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