I would like to thank Jeb Bing and the Pleasanton Weekly for the January 18 Editorial, “School district braces for state budget cuts.” The school district greatly appreciates the support shown by the paper and the community. I would like to clarify a couple of statements made in the editorial.
Through a thorough review of our budget this year (2007/08) and all possible reductions in spending, I believe that, if the Governor does take money back from school districts this year, Pleasanton Unified will be able to operate through June without layoffs. However, if the budget for next year (2008/09) goes through as proposed, Pleasanton Unified would have to cut 4 to 4.5 million dollars from our budget. Since over the past decade we have already pared many programs back, a cut of this magnitude would not be possible without a reduction in personnel and deep cutbacks in services to students.
In regards to enrollment, the demographer’s report did project a decline of 71 students next year. The state supports districts in declining enrollment situations for one year, but after that, there would be a real loss in revenue. The numbers project a slight increase in elementary enrollment, and the Board still believes that Neal School is needed if we are housing more than 6,000 students in grades K through 5 and if an agreement can be reached about construction financing.
John M. Casey, Superintendent
Pleasanton Unified School District