April 26, 2010
Wichita public school leaders are calling an approval Monday night their toughest decision yet in their battle to balance the budget.
"In my heart I would hope that the vote that we make tonight could be our last vote," said BOE President Barbara Fuller.
The board of education discussed cutting about 117 job positions, closing an alternative high school, and dropping the drivers education program altogether.
"I know a lot of different groups have been in contact with us, telling us why their program is the most important," said Fuller.
But district leaders say they don't have a choice. They say they have to be ready for what the Kansas legislature hands them, which they expect to be at least $25 million in cuts. So now the board is discussing on Superintendent John Allison's recommendations, and it's something everyone involved calls "difficult."
"Difficult, but with that being said, I must say, John Allison does his homework, he has given this due diligence, he has been very thoughtful about the whole thing," said Fuller.
But board members say the decision over whether to cut jobs, is still difficult.
"We're into people right now, we weren't there in phase one and two, three and four is talking about people," said Fuller.
Monday, the board unanimously approved which groups of employees will lose their jobs if the district approves cutting positions.