BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Closing the gap. That’s what a proposed billion dollar city school budget is designed to do. The plan includes more money sent to classrooms and cutting top spots at school headquarters.
Gigi Barnett has reaction from parents.
Baltimore City school leaders say they have a plan to keep more money in the classroom and close a $108 million budget shortfall.
This week, school CEO Gregory Thornton rolled out the proposal that would cut jobs at central office.
It’s a plan that could work, but WJZ wanted reaction from parents.
“Done well. It’s exactly right. I think that’s where the money needs to be. It needs to be not in the administration, but in the programs for the kids,” said Amy Shelton, parent.
With all of the cuts and shuffling of cash, Thornton’s proposed budget is more than $1 billion.
The first thing that goes are about 100 people at central office–a savings of nearly $18 million.
“It’s never ideal to cut people’s jobs if you don’t have to. I think again, if it’s in the best interest of the kids, if job cutting is necessary and unavoidable, I don’t know there there’s any alternative,” said Jason Goldstein, parent.
Thornton’s plan also calls for more than $11.5 million sent directly to Baltimore City schools, but some parents say they want to know how that money is going to be divvied out.
“How that’s going to be distributed and what programs are going to get the money is really where I think I’m feeling skeptical and concerned. And the teachers is the one voice that I haven’t been hearing,” said Shelton.
The plan adds more career and technology classes for high schoolers, boosts funds to Pre-K and brings back summer school programs that were once cut.
One more thing parents would like to see:
“If they could decrease the class sizes, it would really be helpful, so that there are fewer students with each teacher,” said Leta Dunham, parent.
School leaders say they want to hear what parents think about this new proposed budget, so they’re hosting a public forum later on this month.
School leaders are set to vote on the proposal April 28.