TPS approves cutting 142 teaching positions

Posted at 11:58 AM, May 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-02 21:30:16-04

The Tulsa Public Schools Board of Education approved a staffing plan for the next school year that would cut 142 teaching positions, Monday night.

Those positions, according to the district, will all be vacant in the 2016-2017 school year. They're being cut through attrition, teacher retirement or the positions aren't currently filled.

The district says cutting these positions will save close to $8 million but increase class sizes for all students except for pre-kindergarten.

Dr. Lana Turner-Addison, board president, says tonight's vote is unfortunate but necessary.

"It's kind of disheartening. It's sad, but it's something we have to do and it's a responsibility that have have to take on as board members," she said.

Turner-Addison says the district can't spend money it doesn't have, and with the possibility of a $20 million shortfall for the next school year, those cuts are necessary.

Monday night's vote comes a week after the board agreed to cut 175 positions -- while adding 73 -- for a net loss of 102. The majority of those came from the district's central office.

Turner-Addison says Monday's vote should be last vote concerning cuts for the next school year.

"For this school year, I could say yes to that. But for future school years, I just don't have the crystal ball," she said.

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