PORTLAND -- School superintendent Carole Smith warned Monday of cuts in teaching and staff positions as the Portland Public Schools district will receive about $27 million less than what was budgeted for the coming year.
To balance the budget, she proposed cutting up to 110 teaching and 34 central office administrative positions.
She will ask the Portland Teachers Association union to agree to furlough days in the coming year, which is not an obligation under the current contract.
Smith wants to preserve full-day kindergarten, and at current teacher-student ratios. The ratio rises at all other grade levels under the cuts.
She also wants to continue investments in a teacher evaluation program that has the backing of the union. Smith wants to improve online learning programs, immersion programs, math and reading support, and culturally specific aid to families.
Smith said the district has fallen prey to a lack of a cohesive statewide approach to school funding.
As a state, we must commit to a different approach to funding education in alignment with the outcomes we want for every student, she said, We cannot continue to build a vision for education in the 21st century, while we dismantle the foundation of our educational system every year.
The school board will hold budget hearings April 9 at 5:00 p.m. at Cleveland High School, 3400 SE 26th Ave., and on April 11 at 6:00 p.m. at Roosevelt High School, 6491 N. Central St.