Citing continued state budget uncertainty, the Washougal School Board passed a Reduction in Force resolution at its last meeting.
If enacted, up to 20 certified staff members could lose their jobs. However, the Board and Superintendent Teresa Baldwin emphasized that the district plans to avoid this if at all possible.
“We have no intention of implementing this but have to include the ‘worst case scenario’ if we need it,” Baldwin said. “Right now, this is just procedure. It’s not a reality.”
The state Legislature is still debating its 2011-13 budget, which includes approximately 23 percent for K-12 funding. The state was projected to have a shortfall of $4.6 million during the next two years. When Gov. Chris Gregoire released her proposed budget in late 2010, it closed the shortfall but included deep cuts to education.
The Legislature is currently deciding how to spread these reductions. A bipartisan Senate proposal includes a $250 million, 3 percent teacher pay cut. A counter-proposal by House Democrats includes reducing the school year by three to five days, and a $56 million pay cut instead.