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Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell, a former Oakland Unified teacher and principal, says district has to live within its "current financial reality" and end the "same repeated conversations that we have been having for decades."
For months the district warned it needed to cut $30 million from its 2019-20 budget. When a plan to cut a lower amount came before them, the board put off a vote amid complaints that members didn't know how the cuts would impact students and schools. About 100 staffers, most from the central office, are slated to lose their jobs.
Students and advocates are loudly protesting a plan to significantly cut staff from the popular initiative, which emphasizes alternatives to punitive discipline approaches like suspension and expulsion.
Oakland teachers voted overwhelmingly to support a strike if their union can't negotiate a new contract.
They rallied Tuesday outside Oakland city hall and won support from the city council which has no authority to settle the contract dispute with the Oakland Unified School District. A strike can not legally occur until after Feb. 15 when a neutral fact-finding report is expected to be issued.
Oakland Unified faces a budget deficit, in part because students are choosing charter and private schools. The district enrolls only 58 percent of the nearly 63,000 school-age children who live in Oakland.