POSTED: Saturday, April 2, 2011 - 6:01pm
UPDATED: Monday, April 4, 2011 - 3:28pm
EL PASO - Public education funding is still on the State Legislature's chopping block, and that has a lot of people worried. That's why public educators from local districts came together Saturday afternoon.
Members of the Ysleta, El Paso, Socorro and Clint Teacher's Associations are worried for their jobs and local children. They say state budget cuts could mean more students in one classroom and fewer teachers. El Paso Independent School District already cut 116 jobs, and they're not done. That's why the teacher's associations tried to send a unified message to state leaders.
"I think this is the worst we've ever seen. We are in crisis mode right now. This is critical. They're proposing $9 billion in cuts for public education. We cannot have this happen in this state," Glenda Hawthorne said.
We're told billions statewide would trickle down to tens-of millions in cuts for local districts.
"They're proposing $42 million in cuts, 42 million in dollars from a 280 million dollar budget would be devastating to a school district," Socorro Independent School District Superintendent Xavier De La Torre said.
De La Torre says that's flat out not fair for students already cheated by the states funding formula.
"A school district around the Dallas-Fort Worth area in Texas receives $8,300 per student from the State of Texas, in revenue, where as a child in the El Paso area receives closer to five-thousand dollars," he said.
Many protestors here and across the state are now asking the legislature to spend all $9.4 billion in the state's rainy day fund and find other revenue sources to keep schools at full strength.
"Our future is our children, and our children need a strong public education. Our constitution, our state constitution, states that this state will provide that education to these students," Hawthorne said.