Thursday, February 23, 2017

Anchorage School board passes budget that dramatically cuts back on classroom teachers and support staff.

Courtesy of ADN:

The Anchorage School Board on Tuesday unanimously passed a budget for next school year that cuts dozens of classroom teaching positions to partially close a $15.3 million budget gap. 

The seven-member board voted on the budget after about 30 minutes of discussion at its evening meeting, leaving the document crafted by the district administration largely unchanged. 

Assuming the state Legislature doesn't decrease or increase per-pupil state funding, the $563.6 million general fund budget for the 2017-18 school year results in the net loss of about 123 "full-time equivalent" positions, including 99 teachers, to save about $7.2 million total. 

"This budget document is not as rosy as I would like it to be, but it's the circumstances that we are in — when you have flat revenue and increasing expenditures," said Anchorage School Board member Kathleen Plunkett. "We're not going to be able to do everything that I know we would all love to do."

As I think I have made abundantly clear over the years I am a huge advocate for spending on public education, so I find this very troubling. 

When I graduated from high school, Alaska's schools were some of the best in the nation.

Since that time I have watched our schools suffer from budget deficits, diminishing support for our teachers, and of course the implementation of NCLB.

These budget cuts leave already overworked teachers with less support and even less of the time and resources they need to do their jobs effectively.

Ultimately all of this hurts the kids.

Trust me if these people REALLY believed that children were our future, public school teachers would be the LAST jobs they would look to cut from the budget.

You mark my words, the state income tax is coming.

It has been 37 years since Governor Hammond signed that bill back in 1980 to eliminate our state income tax but I think with the oil revenue drying up that the writing is on the wall.

And I have to say that if it helps to keep teachers on the job, I would have no problem paying a little more in taxes. 


  1. SAllyinMI4:18 AM

    Our MI legislature wants to cut our very low 4.2% income tax down to zero in 10 years to appease the low knowledge GOP voters. It's sick. There is no revenue replacement planned, except some put forward a sales tax increase, which hurts the poor. Our GOP rag even said this is a bad idea! Taxes are the dues we pay for a civilized society. My God. Just where will we be when DeVos starts sending tax dollars to her precious God schools to indoctrinate the kids to being servants of HER version of the prosperity Gospels. She prospers; we lose.
    And since when do we not want and need good maintained roads and bridges? Not to mention the aging infrastructure we desperately need to address before we are all Flint? I have yet to see Donnie Dumbass sign one EO to work on THAT, nor is Congress doing a damn thing about it...the one thing that WILL bring back good jobs and help all of us, and they have zero interest in it. But they sure love their fake healthcare replacement and their fake caring about retirees and SS. We are doomed until we get people with real brains working with us for a strong nation that values PEOPLE over profits.

    1. Anonymous1:53 PM

      I still want to know what happened to that Billion Dollar surplus that King Rick bragged about during his re-election campaign.

  2. I wrote about this briefly on my Facebook page. Old farmers like my dad were surprisingly well-educated. Yes, he only had an eighth grade education, but it was a GOOD education. Then came several generations of "I don't need to know that," and simple factory jobs. We have to stress education and infrastructure again, as we once did. I don't know what will ultimately happen, but those two things must be done.

    1. Anonymous12:57 PM

      Your dad was in good company. G. Washington and Jefferson were farmers too, but farmers who valued intellect and education.

  3. Anonymous5:24 AM

    Show up and Speak up. "they" are stealing taxpayer public money to funnel to private for profit schools K-12 and most disturbing is high education for profit schools such as devry, trump university, and several others. This depletes our community colleges and public schools. It must STOP now!!! Then the crooks want to explain the move by saying we need to sell public lands to pay for public schools. BALONEY. This is stealing public tax dollars to give to private for profit brainwashing schools and selling public property to riggers, diggers, spillers, drillers and thieves. Show up and stop the lying polluting crooks. And Alaska? Sorry but you should pay your state income tax and get off the oil tit. Work on eliminating property tax, or sales tax on food. I would like to eliminate property tax as this is a path to clear homesteading and ownership. I also feel no basic necessary utility or necessary should be taxed such as food, electric, water, gas or unregulated.

    1. Anonymous12:58 PM

      Trump U never got public dollars though they did everyday people.

  4. Anonymous5:26 AM

    DJT made town halls great this week. Great work everyone. Show up Speak up Stand up and WIN!!

    1. Anonymous7:29 AM

  5. Anonymous6:05 AM

    Fewer teachers with more regulations and testing means more paperwork for the teachers who are left and less time for actual instruction.

    And, once again, the students are the ones who lose.

  6. You lost your oil revenue and now it's time to put your big boy pants on and find another way to pay for your services.
    What is the problem?

  7. Anonymous6:46 AM

    ot? nannies>

  8. Anonymous6:49 AM


  9. Do Alaskans still get their annual oil check? If so, maybe that should be directed toward education instead of individuals. Just a thought. An excellent PUBLIC education system should be the goal for our future. Stop funding private and/or charter schools and funnel that money back to the PUBLIC schools. If parents want to send their kids to something other than a public school, they should bear the cost, not the rest of the people. We are in the mess with 45 because of the failure to adequately educate our populace.

    1. Anonymous1:36 PM

      I think the govt is already tinkering with the Permanent Fund.

  10. Anonymous7:14 AM

    Hot Issue in LA:

  11. dlbvet7:32 AM

    I don't have specifics, but the same exact thing is happening here in Wyoming. There is a shortage this year (can you say renewable energy?) and I heard last fall the Governor was cutting funding for the University (Univ. of Wyo in Laramie), as well as the public schools. As I said, I can't remember the specifics, but I heard something again last week about funding for public schools here.
    It's our lack of money here (no state income tax, loss of coal/gas/oil) but also the flipping Republican legislature.

  12. Anonymous7:40 AM

    Along with old men using Viagra.......?

  13. Anonymous11:41 AM

    THIS NFL BOY>“the 23-year-old football player told the room of students and parents this past Wednesday"

    "But all my boys, stand up. We strong, right? We strong! We strong, right? All my boys, tell me one time: I can do anything I put my mind to. A lot of boys aren’t supposed to be soft-spoken. You know what I’m saying? One day y’all are going to have a very deep voice like this (in deep voice). One day, you’ll have a very, very deep voice.

    ...But the ladies ― they’re supposed to be silent, polite, gentle. My men, my men supposed to be strong. I want y’all to tell me what the third rule of life is: I can do anything I put my mind to. SCREAM it!"

  14. Anonymous12:53 PM

    Let me guess, the didn't cut any coaching jobs or athletic facilities. Cause they need gladiators for their panem et kirkensis.

  15. Anonymous1:10 PM

    So where are the cuts going to occur? Probably at the schools in the poorer parts of town as those families don't have the money and clout like at school such as South.

  16. Public schools are always one of the first targets.

    Children don't vote. (If they did, they'd probably vote to do away with schools.)

    Other targets tend to be the safety net that helps the old, the sick and minorities. Why? Because they aren't strong voters either. BUT I think that thinking has become obsolete. I think the current political climate is waking a sleeping beast that is going to decimate the current business as usual politicians, both Republican and Democratic. Both are at fault here. If they don't change dramatically and quickly, they are going to be replaced.

    "Less than a month into the Trump administration, an unprecedented number of women ― more than 13,000 ― have expressed interest in running for office, according to groups that train women to be candidates. They’re gunning for Congress and for local office; they’re looking to take on Republicans who are too deferential to Trump, and Democrats who haven’t shown sufficient backbone.

    “You have these Democrats now ― they want to be quiet, they don’t want to stir the pot,” said Erin Tyler, a 35-year-old nurse in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, who just decided to run for state office. “Well, we need somebody to stir the pot. Let’s go. Stop being so meek and timid. Open your mouth.”"

  17. Anonymous1:57 PM

    $15 million approximately the cost of one week end security at Mar Lago !!!


Don't feed the trolls!
It just goes directly to their thighs.