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Monroe offers more details in school budget cuts
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MONROE — On March 22, School District of Monroe Superintendent Rodney Figueroa emailed district families to give more details on the upcoming planned budget cuts for the 2024-25 school year. A combination of a 2016 operational referendum ending and a lack of state funds since the COVID-19 pandemic, the district appears to be more than $3 million in the red for next school year.

The district’s Board of Education approved the administration’s plan to cut $937,000 from the 2024-25 budget through a series of attrition, staff reduction and third party services at the March 11 school board meeting.

“The reductions include the elimination of 6 part time positions and no loss of full-time employment in the District while reducing $937,000 of a projected $2.8 million to 3.4 million budget deficit for the 2024-25 school year,” Figueroa wrote in the press release to district families. “Changes that impact positions and employment are some of the most difficult to make and receive for staff, families, and students. We are sharing the current information with you now well aware other staffing changes may occur (i.e. retirements, resignations, etc.) as we move from this school year to the next.”

Of the buildings hit hardest by the cuts is Abraham Lincoln Elementary. The school was already in the process of transitioning to a one-section school, meaning one classroom per grade. Of the changes in the budget, the process is sped up a year.

“The reality is that Abraham Lincoln will have less than half the number of full-time students compared with our other two elementary schools,” Figueroa explained. “With significantly fewer students, we had to make the hard decision on which full-time positions to keep and where sharing staff is the best option. None of these decisions were easy because every staff member of the School District of Monroe works for and cares about our kids.”

The district is also reallocating positions to be used at multiple buildings, like school counseling, physical education and health services.

“Our District Nurse and Parkside and Northside Health Aides will provide the training and coverage needed to care for our children throughout the District as we move this number of staff closer to pre-pandemic levels,” Figueroa said. “We understand there is frustration with the needed changes to bring the District into a more fiscally responsible position and we will continue working to provide high quality and equitable school experiences for all of our students. Over the next several months, we will be working hard on the details to ensure we have staff and support to best serve our students.”

In other matters, on March 21 the district closed on the sale for the new 70-acre high school property on the far east side of the city formerly known as B&S. Groundbreaking for the new school is expected to take place sometime in May.

monroe schools budget cuts
Detailed plans of the 2024-25 School District of Monroe Budget Cuts released by Superintendent Rodney Figueroa.