Closing campus, cutting teacher pay among ideas proposed for Paso schools budget

CORRECTION: The Bauer campus of Bauer-Speck Elementary School is not among Paso Robles Public Schools' list of school sites that could be sold. It's not known what would happen to that campus if that part of the school were closed.

Leaders at Paso Robles Public Schools rolled out a list of proposed budget cuts Wednesday that include the closure of a campus in an effort to save at least $7.4 million over the next 18 months.

The ideas - which include teacher and staff layoffs, increased class sizes and cuts to libraries, music and sports programs - still need approval from the school board and employee unions. Superintendent Kathy McNamara said the district's projected date for school board review and suggested approval is between February and March.

In the district's fiscal solvency plan e-mailed to school staff on Wednesday, the proposals include:

* The closure of the Bauer side of Bauer-Speck Elementary School at 17th and Vine streets. The Bauer campus serves kindergarten and first grade students. Those grades would move to the Speck side across the street from Bauer. Bauer is also on the district's list of school sites to be sold.

* Increasing class sizes from 25 to 30 for kindergarten through third grade

* Eliminating Paso Robles High School coaching and various extracurricular stipends to teachers

* Cutting teacher pay by 1 percent

* Cutting school board members' stipends by 50 percent

Parents, students, teachers or anyone with comments about this story are asked to contact staff writers Tonya Strickland at tstrickland@thetribunenews.com and AnnMarie Cornejo at acornejo@thetribunenews.com by 4 p.m. today.