In less than a month, 226 local teachers, nurses, counselors,
psychologists and administrators will receive termination papers.
The Burbank Unified School District might have to cut the
positions -- more than a fifth of its 1,059 certificated employees --
if the state’s dire budget projections trickle down to the local
In her report to the school board at its meeting Thursday,
Director of Personnel Services Nancy Gascich said 85% of the
district’s budget is tied to personnel costs. A reduction in the
costs of programs, equipment and supplies will not be enough to cover
the anticipated $4-million cut to the district in the next 14
months, she said. The cuts are a result of a state budget deficit of
more than $30 billion.
“Staff reductions weigh heavily on us. It’s not something we like
to talk about,” Gascich told the board. “We are hoping for the best
but preparing for the worst.”
State-education code requires that certificated employees receive
preliminary termination notices by March 15. She hopes affected
employees will not receive final notices if the state comes through
with enough money to keep jobs and programs intact for the remainder
of this year and the 2003-04 fiscal year.
Among the certificated employees scheduled to receive the
preliminary termination notices are school psychologists, nurses and
counselors, teachers, and management employees.
If the district sends out final notices, certificated employees
must get them by May 15. For management, the deadline is June 30.
More than 800 non-certificated employees, who took a big hit in
cuts earlier this year, also would be affected, Gascich said, but
added that the district is only required to give them 30 days’
Kim Allender, co-president of the Burbank Teachers Assn., said his
group recognizes that while the worst-case scenario can happen,
members are optimistic. He said he is hopeful state legislators will
loosen the purse strings on education dollars.
The district also is considering bowing out of the California
Public Employees Retirement System’s health insurance coverage, which
will have a 30% cost increase next year, said Steve Bradley,
assistant superintendent for business affairs.
To remain with CALPERS, the district would face an additional $2.4
million in costs to cover employees and retired personnel, Bradley
The district will finalize its budget by July 1, but the state’s
budget could change after that time, making local cuts too great or