The Kelso School Board will vote on Monday on a resolution to authorize Superintendent Mary Beth Tack to lay off workers, should it be necessary to balance next year’s budget.
The district is facing a $4 million shortfall as a consequence of recent changes to the state funding model.
According to the resolution, the superintendent would be allowed to fire up to 22 full-time teachers, along with an unspecified number of administrative and support staff. Also, Tack could choose to cut or downsize programs in the district.
Tack is not required to make any layoffs outlined in the resolution, and district officials proposed a list of budget cuts they believe would eliminate the need for layoffs altogether. But the resolution allows layoffs to occur if the board ultimately decides they are “financially necessary,” the resolution says.
As it stands, the district has proposed cutting about 16 full-time teaching positions and 16 other full-time positions, among other cuts. District officials expect the staffing cuts to happen through attrition, or leaving resignation or retirement vacancies unfilled, instead of forced layoffs.
Also Monday the board will hear an update on this school year’s budget, as well as review an online survey about the proposed budget cuts. The survey will remain open through April 19, and community members and school staff can access it on the district’s website.
Additionally, the board will receive a recommendation for a name for the new elementary school it is building in Lexington and vote to give supervision of interschool extracurricular activities to the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.
The meeting starts at 6:00 p.m. in the district office on Crawford Street. It will be preceded by a board work session about the budget reserve, starting at 4:30 p.m.