The Pasadena Unified school board has voted to close Cleveland Elementary School as part of a round of $10.1 million in long-term cuts mandated by Los Angeles County.
The board voted 5-2 Tuesday to shutter the elementary school and transfer its approximately 100 students and programs to Washington Accelerated School, beginning next school year, for an estimated $258,473 to $354,667 in annual savings, the Pasadena Star-News reported.
The board still needs to find another $6.5 million in cuts, and until it reaches that threshold, two other schools remain on the chopping block: Wilson Middle and Franklin Elementary schools.
Though the board voted not to close them Tuesday, the schools will remain on a list of dozens of potential cuts from which the board must choose until it reaches its two-year, $10.1 million target.
Last week, the board voted to make $3.1 million in cuts through staff reductions, changes to the procurement process and charging more rent to charter schools that lease district buildings, according to the Star-News. The cuts are part of a directive from the Los Angeles County Office of Education, which has set a December due date for the district to craft its next fiscal stabilization plan. But the board will need to make its final decisions on cuts by mid-November.
One of the goals is to ensure the district — previously described by the county as being at risk of financial insolvency — is able to meet its state-mandated 3 percent reserve for the 2020-21 school year, or about $6.6 million. The reserves act as a rainy-day fund for emergencies.
The situation is serious, county education officials said at a meeting last week. If the board doesn’t make the cuts and improve its financial picture, the county could take control of the district.
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