Chris Christie is cutting away at NJ's huge deficit and the school budget is one of those areas getting some trimming. The proposed tax budget would spend $820 million less on public schools next year in about 600 school districts. The money that is allocated to the districts is used for financial aid, salaries, and educational programs. Now local districts are scrambling to figure out how to budget their funds which means loss of jobs, program cuts, and my taxes are most likely going to go up. An article in the Star Ledger said that Schundler (state education commissioner) will encourage districts not to raise property taxes. Thanks for the encouragement, but what I really want to know is if he is providing the districts with suggestions. Are there any other cost savings options for the budget? Looking at the bigger picture, is there an opportunity to consolidate some of our school districts? NJ has 21 counties and over 600 school districts. If there was some consolidation, there would also be a reduction in all those superintendent salaries (a majority of them all making over $100K a year). I'm afraid the the impact of these budget cuts on the local level are going to be on the dedicated teachers that are trying to make a difference. Stay tuned to your local budget and how this will affect you. Be ready to vote on April 20th.
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Lindsey Fandozzi

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