Education

Yet more layoffs at Tacoma schools. District hopes cuts for this school year nearing an end

New positions eliminated in Tacoma schools budget cuts

Tacoma Public Schools announced five additional layoffs Thursday, bringing the total positions eliminated so far this year to 35.9 FTEs.
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Tacoma Public Schools announced five additional layoffs Thursday, bringing the total positions eliminated so far this year to 35.9 FTEs.

Tacoma Public Schools announced five additional layoffs Thursday, bringing the total positions eliminated so far this school year to 35.9 FTEs.

The eliminations come as the district funds raises for teachers agreed to following September’s teacher strike. Eliminations began in October and are all central administration staff. No teacher positions have been cut.

“We’ve identified four and a half FTEs that will be eliminated, which has resulted in an additional savings of what we’ve previously communicated of about $240,000,” Rosalind Medina, the district’s chief financial officer, said at Thursday’s meeting.

The positions eliminated were:

  • Coordinator, public information

  • Executive assistant, K-12 support

  • Account tech, budget

  • Copy center specialist

  • Boiler technician

As a result, three people were laid off, and one person was provided a transfer opportunity to another position. The other position was vacant.

The district has identified an additional six positions to be eliminated this school year, but those positions have not been announced.

Since cuts began, Tacoma Schools central administration staffing dropped from 231.97 FTE positions to 218.35 FTE positions as of Dec. 10. The district announced 19 FTE eliminations in October and 13 more in November.

By August 2019, central administration staffing is expected to drop to 197.20 FTE.

“This represents a reduction of about 14.7 percent of our central admin,” Medina said.

The district doesn’t expect any eliminations of support services or school-based positions, such as teachers, this school year. In the 2019-20 school year, that could change.

At this time, the district has saved $19.4 million from cuts and plans to save an additional $4.4 million for this school year.

“This puts us in a position where across the district we believe we may have addressed the deficit,” Medina said.

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