Decision: No School Closings – More Budget Cut And Mail Ballot Referendum Plans In The Works

The Robbinsdale School Board approved a $5 million cut plan without closing a school this year. Now the tricky part: creating more plans for reducing costs in other areas. Will there be enough letters in the alphabet for their updated scenarios? You can download Budget Cuts “Scenario I” here (PDF).

From the MN Sun-Post January 15:

By opting not to close an elementary school, the board chose instead to make reductions in other areas suggested by the administration, including the special education and English Language Learners programs. District officials have not yet said if staff, programs, or both, will be cut in those departments.

Board members agreed to begin a “strategic planning process” to establish a future vision for District 281, including recommendations for school closings, repurposing of facilities, and grade-level re-organization. That process is expected to begin in March and conclude by Sept. 10.

Keep your eyes peeled for a possible mail-in referendum this year (Superintendent Mack said this might happen).

“We wouldn’t have to wait until November,” Mack told the board on Jan. 7. “There are two-week windows in March, May, September and December.”

Ballots would have to be sent first class mail, and is triple the cost of regular election expenses.  If citizen groups with funding come forward, the ballots will be coming in your mailbox. Meanwhile, an additional $4 million in spending cuts are estimated for 2009-10.

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