Palo Alto Weekly Online Edition

Publication Date: Friday, May 02, 2003

If you were in charge of the school budget, what would you cut and what would be completely off limits?
Question and interviews by Martin Nobida.
Photographs by Kainaz Amaria. Asked at various elementary schools in Palo Alto.

Bill Sundstrom
College professor
Lewis Street, Palo Alto
I would probably favor a proportionate, across-the-board reduction, rather than eliminating any entire program.
Shawn Felsch
Pre-school teacher
Ross Road, Palo Alto

It's a really difficult question, especially when you want so much for your child. But if I had to, I would cut from administration, because it's not as tangible to the kids. Just keep the cuts out of the classrooms and make sure the teachers are paid well.
Asha Bucklin
Corina Way, Palo Alto
I like music, but we may not really need it. I wouldn't cut PE.
Hazel Watson
Kipling Street, Palo Alto

I wouldn't cut math. If you cut math, the children wouldn't be able to work out what the budget is.
Chris Easton
Marion Avenue, Palo Alto Weekly
Cuts should be as far from the class as possible. Many districts seem to be top-heavy administratively. Eliminating class-size reductions would be a big mistake for education.
Mary Ann Norton
Substitute teacher
Ross Road, Palo Alto
Maybe class size should be increased so that at least the students could still be exposed to as much as possible. I would hate to see maintenance slack off, because it's important that the environment is clean and looks good for the students.
Doug Meek
Student attendant
Oakland Avenue, Oakland
If one thing had to be cut, I'd put it on offsite administration
John Skinner
Varian Way, Palo Alto
I wouldn't take away a dollar. I'm very angry that education once again has become the whipping boy of inept politicians.




Editor's note:
This is part of the final installment in a four-part series on how the school budget crisis is affecting various segments of the community.
As the biggest fiscal fiasco to hit education rocks schools across the state, the Palo Alto Unified School District and the surrounding community battle a state property-tax grab and formulate massive reductions to the district's 2003-2004 budget.
At a study session April 29, the district will reveal its plans to reduce the budget by more than $4 million for the 2003-2004 to address anticipated state cuts and a shortfall in revenue.
In the meantime, it is fighting to hold onto more than $23.1 million in property tax funding that Gov. Gray Davis threatens to take away.

First installment
Second installment
Third installment

Behind the numbers

Budget cuts take a
back-seat to school work

Budget crisis forces
new thoughts on school funding

List of budget cuts




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