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Sequester Impact Report: District Cuts Include Occupational Education


August 16, 2013


Sequester Impact Report: District Cuts Include Occupational Education

This week, AASA: The School Superintendents Association released a new report about the effects of the across-the-board sequester cuts on school districts around the country. A survey of 541 responses from 48 states yielded some interesting results on how districts are dealing with reductions in federal funding, including Perkins, as the 2013-14 school year begins.

The report notes that the federal share of a school district’s budget will vary. Those districts that receive a larger share of federal funds—often in high-poverty areas or more rural parts of the country—will see a bigger hole in their budgets as a result of cuts in federal funds. Though the impacts of the cuts are not the same for all districts, 86 percent of those surveyed by AASA reported that their districts will not be able to absorb the cuts. These schools will have to make reductions in staff, services, maintenance or find other saving in their shrinking budgets to offset the reductions in funding.

Over half of the respondents (53 percent) indicated that their districts have already been forced to incorporate a 5 percent reduction (the amount of the across-the-board sequester cut) into their 2013-14 school year budget. More alarmingly, 22 percent reported that their districts could not build in a 5 percent cut for the upcoming school year because their budgets are stretched too far already.

When asked specifically how sequester cuts would impact their districts, over half (53 percent) of those surveyed reported teacher layoffs or the elimination of teaching positions at their schools. Other highly reported impacts of sequestration include fewer professional development opportunities, increases in class size, deferring technology purchases and cuts in non-instructional personnel. Reductions in elective course offerings and cut backs in extra-curricular activities were reported by 19 percent of respondents, while 8 percent indicated that “occupational education” courses would have to be reduced as well.

How are cuts affecting your school? Is your district experiencing teacher layoffs, reducing CTE course offerings, putting off the purchasing of new equipment or reducing other services that benefit CTE students? Help us to show the importance of funding CTE by sharing your story

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