The Putnam County schools superintendent says they're facing layoffs unless the district makes some big changes.
Superintendent Rick Surrency took to the district's webpage to warn parents and staff of big impending cuts. He said he learned about the plans for cuts from several sources, like the Florida School Board Association and the Florida Association of District School Superintendents.
"We're trying to keep money in reserves to make sure that when we do face these catastrophic cuts, whatever they look like, that we don't have to lay people off, that our instructional programs are not adversely affected," said Surrency.
The district is preparing for the yet to be determined cuts starting next school year. They will be eliminating out-of-classroom positions: media specialists and reading coaches positions, but Surrency said the people who held those positions can apply for classroom positions, so he doesn't anticipate layoffs.
The district will not be filling two vacant district police positions, they'll also be getting rid of one school resource officer and asking schools within the district to eliminate five percent of their discretionary budget.
Surrency said he's hoping these moves for next school year will help them avoid layoffs in 2018.
A spokesperson with the Florida School Boards Association said the predicted cuts are based off of recent talk and budget reduction exercises in the Florida Legislature. She believes other districts will be impacted.
A spokesperson with Clay County schools agrees there will be statewide impacts, but said they haven't made any decisions for that far into the future.
A Duval schools spokesperson said they too, do not yet have any final plans in place.
Surrency said he's asked for feedback from principals and department heads to hear what they think could be cut.
Staff will look over suggestions on Monday and will have a list of ideas ready for a school board workshop on Tuesday.
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