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SCHOOLS: S.F. teachers' union to vote on new contract that cuts layoffs from 348 to 195

Agreement with school district also would cut deficit by $30 million

The San Francisco Unified School District reached a tentative agreement with union leaders Monday that will save a number of teacher jobs if both parties formally adopt the proposal, union and school district officials have announced.

The agreement is expected to save the district $30 million and includes four furlough days per teacher for the next two school years, the United Educators of San Francisco union said. It also includes some cuts to a portion of teacher pay that had been provided by 2008's local parcel tax, Proposition A.

SFUSD spokeswoman Gentle Blythe said lay-off notices for 348 positions were sent out this weekend, but that the agreement would bring the number down to 195.

According to the union, a "substantial" number of the 101 layoff notices sent to paraprofessional staff members will also be revoked.

The school district faces a $113 million budget gap over the next two school years. The shortfalls are the result of $17 billion in state cuts to K-12 education over the past two years, which the union called an unprecedented divestment.

"If the lawmakers in Sacramento continue to make painful cuts to education and vital public services, we will put a generation of students at risk of falling permanently behind," union president Dennis Kelly said in a statement. "The state should be looking to close corporate tax loopholes and to reforming the budget process."

Union members will vote on the new contract by mail, and ballots will be counted May 28. The Board of Education next meets on May 25.

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