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Facing deep cuts, more schools make fiscal 'watch list'

The number of California school districts in financial trouble is on the rise.

State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell has announced that 126 districts were on the state's fiscal "watch list" - a whooping 17 percent increase from last June.

Jack O'ConnellJack O'Connell

In 2006-07, there were only three districts on the "negative certification" list - at risk of not paying their bills. And 19 districts were on the "qualified certification" watch list -  with finances bad enough to be concerned, according to the Department of Education.

As of last month, 12 districts were on the negative certification list and 114 districts had a qualified certification status.

Nine districts in the East Bay  - approximately 25 percent of schools in the area - are on the state's "watch list" for insolvency because they will be unable to balance their budgets in the next three years without substantial cuts, according to the Contra Costa Times.

Starting in 2010-11, Hayward Unified School District must eliminate at least $17.8 million from its $181 million budget because of state education funding cuts and declining enrollment.

O'Connell called for more financial assistance from the governor's office and the Legislature to help cushion schools from the harsh economics they're facing.

Massive state budget cuts are crippling our public school system's ability to operate," O'Connell said...Districts now are forced to lay off even more teachers and make deep cuts to educational programs to address projected budget shortfalls or face possible bankruptcy and state receivership.

To see the full list of schools on the state watch list, click here.

Filed under: K–12, Daily Report

Comments

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Jondi Gumz's picture
What a stunning report! School districts can not spend money they do not have. Does the state have the capacity to take over this many school districts? With shrinking funds, could the state run them any better? What's the solution?

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