BA School Board Approves Nearly $7.5M In Budget Cuts, Eliminates 66 Positions

Monday, May 9th 2016, 11:09 pm
By: Joseph Holloway

The Broken Arrow school district cut its budget by nearly $7.5 million and lost dozens of jobs at Monday night's school board meeting.

The district wanted to keep student instructional programs in place and keep core classroom teachers in place.

Superintendent Jarod Mendenhall said the district looked at several areas to make the cuts.

"Whether it was increasing class sizes, transportation, programs, academic programs," he said.

Among the 66 eliminated positions were 20 support staff and 17 non-core teachers. The district's class sizes will go up by just one student.

5/9/2016 Related Story: Broken Arrow School Board To Vote On Budget Cuts

Mendenhall said, "Try to protect the classroom size as best as we can. That was our number one priority."

At Monday night's meeting, Mendenhall and school board members said waiting for the state legislature to resolve budget issues led to the decision.

"What you're seeing is really a decision being made on the predictions and what we've seen to date," the superintendent said.

But, if the cuts are less drastic than expected, some of the positions may return.

"If the cuts wind up being less than the state, then we'll have to come back and really do some different things, and maybe reevaluate at that point," Mendenhall said.

He said some of the non-core teachers will be reassigned to other core jobs in the district.