LISD Forced to Cut Budget by $2 Million - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/23/05

LISD Forced to Cut Budget by $2 Million

Lubbock Independent School District will present its budget to the school board Thursday and it will be $2 million less than they planned on. The state's school finance fiasco is forcing LISD to cut it's budget.

Officials say they are going to great links to make sure the cuts do not affect their most important priorities... their students. Jim Andrus Principal at Preston Smith Elementary says, "In Lubbock, we're fortunate we have a superintendent and a school board who understand the needs of the local campus. So they have insulated us from reductions the state has put forth."

Just one week into the school year, Preston Smith Elementary has only seen a small cut in its library budget. Despite larger cuts at the district level, students there will go on learning the alphabet and receiving a priceless education. Second grade teacher Stacy Comer says, "It has not effected our classroom at all. We have everything we need and students would not know one bit of difference."

Comer says whatever she needs, principal Andrus will make sure she gets. That's because most of the purse strings are being tightened at the central office. Andrus says, "We're gonna make sure our kids are educated properly. If that means using the back of a sheet of paper to run through the printer again to send a note home, that's what we'll do." Deputy Superintendent for Elementary Education Ann Graves adds, "We've really tried to be on the conservative side. If we've had to cut anywhere, we made sure it's on the central office level. We've cut supplies down here and we've cut travel down here."

Graves says cuts in travel at the central office mean less workshops and professional development, but the largest part of the two million dollar budget reduction comes from staff cut backs. She explains. "No one has lost a job. As people resigned or people retired, we did not re-hire or re staff those positions.

LISD's general operating budget now stands at just over $169 million. The school board may or may not make more cuts at their meeting Thursday.

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