Archive for Thursday, August 15, 2002

Local school superintendent preparing for budget cuts

August 15, 2002

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Most Lawrence public school students had their first full day of class Thursday morning.

But reading, 'riting and 'rithmetic were taking a back seat as school district officials pondered a fourth R Red ink.

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For the latest updates, tune in at 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. to Sunflower Broadband Channel 6 and pick up a copy of Wednesday's Journal-World.

Gov. Bill Graves is expected early Thursday afternoon to announce budget cuts across most state agencies and programs in order to shore up a slump in tax revenue.

Estimates have been made the cuts could be from 3 percent to 5 percent, which could translate into a $100 per pupil cut for Lawrence's school district.

Supt. Randy Weseman said he would be waiting for the governor's announcement, expected at 1 p.m.

"We're not surprised by that. We've prepared for it in a number of ways," Weseman said.

He said a 3 percent cut would amount to about $2 million in cuts to the Lawrence district.

The district will consider dipping into its contingency fund and looking at operational efficiences and cutting into administrative services.

"What I'm going to protect is the classroom, direct services to kids. That is, the teacher and the classroom," Weseman said.

Weseman said after hearing the governor's plans, he'll put together some recommendations for the school board to consider on Sept. 9.

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