Jul 29, 2014

Pasadena Unified to Issue 80 Layoff Notices

The board will meet next Tuesday to issue the 80 notices, though it is likely far fewer could be laid off.

The Pasadena Unified School Board will meet next Tuesday to vote on issuing 80 layoff notices to teachers to meet state deadlines requiring districts to give advanced warning to any teacher that could lose her job.

The notices will go to 78 full-time employees with teacher credentials and two part-time ones.  

The biggest hit groups listed by the district are elementary school general subject teachers and elementary school resource teachers.  Together, those groups total 47 potential layoffs.

The notices do not mean the teachers will definitely lose their jobs - Adam Wolfson, the district's communications director, described the plan as a "worst-case scenario."

Because the state requires notices to be issued by March 15, it is an annual ritual for districts to list more employees as potential layoffs than ultimately end up losing their jobs.

Wolfson noted that PUSD has laid off 20 teachers in the past two years, despite issuing .  In the spring of 2010, the district issued 160, according to media reports at the time.  

The district also has to contend with changing state budget information that makes it difficult to predict its financial situation for next year, Wolfson said.

The ultimate decision on layoffs for next year will be made around mid-May, he added.

At this week's meeting, the board also gave notice to unions representing its employees it would continue to negotiate over potential furlough days, an alternative to layoffs.

Wolfson noted that PUSD has had five furlough days scheduled for this academic year, and that the furloughs save approximately $600,000 per day, making it often a viable fiscal alternative to layoffs.

The meeting where the board will discuss the meetings will be on Tuesday March 6 at 5:30 p.m. at PUSD headquarters at 351. S Hudson Avenue in Pasadena.  A full-list of positions that could be impacted are listed on right.

Editor's note: The original version of this story said furloughs would save $600,000 for PUSD, rather than $600,000 per furlough day.

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