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Sequestration Could Result in Program Cuts, Job Losses Within County School System

Special education and Title I programs would suffer under the federal budget cuts.

If sequestration goes into effect Friday, Baltimore County Public Schools will be feeling a major pinch through job losses and cuts to program spending over the next two years as the system works to reign in spending.

Various media outlets have reported that federal education funds would be strongly impacted by the $1.2 trillion in automatic federal spending cuts—mandated by the 2011 deficit reduction law—over a 10-year span that will occur absent Congressional intervention.

Barbara Burnopp, chief financial officer for the school system, said BCPS officials anticipate taking an approximate 7 to 10 percent hit to the system's budget for the 2013 fiscal year, which would be around $4.6 million. However, a more precise figure will be provided to the system by the Maryland State Department of Education in about 30 days.

"You won't see immediate impacts in the short term, but we are anticipating long term impacts [over the next two years]," Burnopp said.

In line with nationwide challenges for programs, she said Title I and special education would face the biggest difficulties.

"We would need to make a lot of changes to sustain the programs in the long term," she said.

According to a news release from the National School Boards Action Center, special education and Title I will see $726 million and $579 million in cuts respectively over the 10-year span throughout the country.

Teaching jobs would also be affected, though an exact number of job losses in Baltimore County is not yet known.

"We would have to downsize," she said.

The National School Boards Action Center conducted a poll asking school board members across the county to share how many job losses they would expect for the 2013-2014 school year. The majority reported that up to 10 layoffs would occur, with larger districts anticipating significantly more.

Nationally, the federal Head Start early education program for low-income families would also see an estimated $398 million loss—the third biggest cut—according to the release. Baltimore County does not participate in this effort.

School contruction and improvement—a hotly-discussed topic locally—as well as general "maintenance of effort" initiatives, will not suffer, as they are funded through local and state revenue sources, Burnopp said.

RARE MARYLAND INDEPENDENT March 03, 2013 at 04:13 AM
FIFA, you are unfortunately living in the past. Got somethng for you - everybody, everybody has a story to tell. It could be I was poor, pops rolled out on me, pops and moms fought all the time, I was given everything and now I don't know how to do anything. Your envy for those who have more is hurting you. Being mad at someone who went to Gilman while you went to Woodlawn is not going to help you. Life ain't fair and nobody cares. Pops rolled out on you, you were poor, moms and pops drank all the time, no one cares. Control what you can control. If this happened to you, take control of your life so it does not happen to your kids. Pops rolled out on you, don't roll out on your kids. We live in a competitive society, we are tapped out, can't keep funding groups that don't want to get ahead - it is coming, no matter who is in charge. Simple math at this point. You have in your mind people wake up every morning and say, how can I make this group's life miserable. A few do. Most wake up and say how can I grow financially, personally, spiritually. You have a fundamental view of life that folks can never move out of their condition and move forward. One can tell by your miserable posts. I hope you mature and realize that greatness IS in every person, and the only thing holding these people back are the people themselves. Another one by Les Brown "To have what others don't have, you must be willing to do what others don't do." Yes - a black man.
Buck Harmon March 03, 2013 at 04:45 AM
Sequestration Could Result in Program Cuts, Job Losses Within County School System...the topic of this thread..
David Taylor March 03, 2013 at 07:16 AM
You can't cut your way to prosperity - look at Greece. Otherwise I think you hit on some solid points. We have an income gap that destroyed the middle and working class (and the tax base), wars and billions in energy subsidies, and that was combined with tax cuts. Is there any surprised things are the way they are? Re-ivesting in real, people-run small/med business, in education, return to a more traditional scaled tax structure ... and maybe a solid dose of anti-corruption laws targeting lobbyists might turn the tide.
David Taylor March 03, 2013 at 07:21 AM
RMI is a notorious troll... don't feed the trolls ;) What he is, and what he's really about, is plain for all to see here.
amark March 03, 2013 at 05:33 PM
All these local issues should be that- local issues and not affected at all by this. The federal govt should do only what it is constitutionally allowed to do and no more.

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