State legislators forced to step in


Feb. 20, 2004, midnight | By Kedamai Fisseha | 16 years, 9 months ago

Baltimore schools face a deficit which state cannot ignore


This is not original reporting. All information was compiled from the Washington Post article "Bailout set for schools in Baltimore" by Lori Montgomery.

The Baltimore school system is getting some much needed relief from the state on the heels of a $58 million deficit. The deficit comes along with massive protests from teachers and union officials.
 
Governor Robert Ehrlich has offered the school system a $42 million loan, which he wants repaid before July 1, 2005. He has also specified that a repayment plan must be designed before the close of the week.
 
Erlich's loan will be augmented by contributions from Baltimore city officials and private parties. Without the money, the school system will be forced to undertake enormous layoffs and pay cuts.
 
Just last week, about 10 percent of Baltimore teachers called in sick to protest a huge cut proposal. The protest led to enormous under-staffing in some schools and added to the general sense of turmoil in the system.
 
Baltimore schools have already released some 800 employees, nearly eight percent of which were teachers.
 
Former state senator Robert R. Neall, who was brought in to help address the problem told the Washington Post on February 18 that without help, the deficit would rise to $90 million and that "everyone's paycheck would bounce" by June.
 
Baltimore's troubles come alongside a Prince George's county deficit, which is currently at $23.7 million. Legislators hope that the severity of Baltimore's deficit will reduce the protest from Prince George's and other school systems around the state who also need assistance.



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Kedamai Fisseha. Kedamai Fisseha sorely misses the computer lab where Silver Chips was born and is daily reborn. He is currently living and writing from London, England where he is glad for the chance to continue his participation in the organization. More »

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