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Canton city school district faces cutbacks

Friday, January 30, 2004

CANTON (AP) -- This city's school district is in for a series of job and program cuts.
Superintendent Dianne Talarico outlined the district's money problems Thursday at a meeting with teachers, administrators and support staff at McKinley High School. She told them 94 would lose their jobs at the end of the school year.
Displaying the numbers on a large screen behind her, Talarico said at least 60 teachers, six administrators and 28 members of the support staff will be eliminated to save $4.7 million this year.
But no buildings are slated to close, at least not right away.
"These are preliminary recommended reductions and eliminations," she said. "It's the first round of cuts."
The district faces a $4.1 million deficit this year, because a 7.9-mill additional operating levy failed in November.
The budget deficit will grow to $7 million, said Talarico, if another levy try fails March 2.
The list of those losing their jobs would grow as well by 40 teachers, four more administrators and 22 support staff members, she said.
Various other cost-saving measures are in consideration. Some bus routes would be eliminated and some high school programs and courses would be ended.
"We're faced with the stark reality that [Ohio's] system of funding leaves us with a shortfall," Talarico said.
The Canton school district has about 11,000 pupils and 25 school buildings. In November 1999, Canton voters approved a bond issue that with matching state funds is designed to renovate or rebuild every school in the district by 2007.