Long Beach Unified administrators move forward with cuts

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Administrators at L.A. County’s second largest school district expect to move forward at their meeting Tuesday with their largest budget cuts to date.

Long Beach Unified School District administrators say they may have to cut more than $60 million from next fiscal year’s budget, if Sacramento budget projections materialize. To prepare, the school district may send out about 600 teacher layoff notices by March 15.

The cuts will affect learning more than last year’s reductions, says Joe Boyd of the Long Beach teachers’ union. "Last year at this time I think everybody was in shock, we knew what was coming but when it came it was still hard. This year I think everyone’s been trying to march along, but any person who believes they’re going to get a layoff notice is worried about it."

Layoffs will mean class size increases in all grades – and fewer nurses, principals, school psychologists and security personnel. Approval of an expected ballot initiative to extend some statewide taxes may soften the blow.

Long Beach Unified’s school board is expected to make a final decision on teacher layoff notices in two weeks.