San Diego School Budget Cuts: Magnet Schools Likely To Close

by on March 24, 2009 · 4 comments

in Civil Rights, Economy, Education, San Diego

Faced with the onerous task of trimming $100 million from the 2009-2010 budget on the heels of plummeting state tax revenues, the San Diego Unified School Board has elected to make cuts that will likely lead to closings for several magnet schools, including the acclaimed School for Creative and Performing Arts (SCPA) and the Language Academy.

The cuts, under the School Board’s budget reduction “Plan A”, call for eliminating transportation to magnet schools. The SCPA, located in Paradise Hills, busses in 90% of its student body, and it is likely that enrollment will decline significantly next year should transportation be eliminated. School officials declined comment about how many of the currently enrolled 1400 students would not be able to return next year. A rumored study on the impact of the bussing cuts has yet to materialize, so hard facts are difficult to come by. Given that 45% of the students in the performing and creative arts program also come from economically disadvantaged households, the threat facing SPCA (and other schools) is very real.

San Diego’s magnet school system includes programs at over two dozen schools. All of the Magnet schools combined use a total of 262 buses and the district is predicting that their elimination will save $10.1 million. The school board is expected to hear comments and take action on the proposed budget at its March 24th meeting.

Although there had been earlier discussions about terminating the magnet programs, eliminating bussing was not discussed in any public forums. District officials are tight lipped about the proposed cuts, refusing to comment about the potential side effects. Hundreds of students and parents have signed petitions or sent emails to the school board opposing the decision.

more news as it becomes available….

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar doug porter March 24, 2009 at 1:54 pm

yikes! today IS march 24th!

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avatar Frank Gormlie March 25, 2009 at 12:28 pm

This is a big issue. I noticed the U-T dealt with it in a short piece on the inside page of the local section. Will you be doing a follow-up post?

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avatar doug porter March 25, 2009 at 4:54 pm

when there is something to say…. everybody is being real tight lipped about this issue. there were demonstrations at the school board meeting last night, but not a peep about what the school board might be doing.

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avatar Leah Drost December 18, 2010 at 10:03 am

I am currently a student at SCPA and it would be absolutely HORRIBLE if they got rid of this school. I used to go to Scripps Ranch High and I did not fit in at all. People would tease me for being a musician and call me names. Thats when I realized I needed to get out of there and go to a school where I belong. SCPA made me realize this is where I fit in. With these crowds of kids. With this kind of atmosphere. I was following going direction. So many kids have to take bus trasportation. With bus illimination, so many talented art majors wouldn’t get to go to the school, along with me. Thats why I want to call for action. If we don’t do something, teachers will lose their jobs and students will go back to their public schools failing to follow their future. Music is all I do, so please. Just please save our school.

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