The Student News Site of Tualatin High School

The Wolf

The Student News Site of Tualatin High School

The Wolf

The Student News Site of Tualatin High School

The Wolf


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Andrew Gerlach
Staff Writer

TTSD budget cuts hit hard, impacting teachers, students through layoffs, program cuts

Art by Parker Morgan

The Tigard-Tualatin Education Association (TTEA) recently reported that 46.17 total licensed Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) teachers are being reduced for next year; in simpler words, our school district is losing nearly 50 teachers because of a budget reduction. 

“Nobody really feels safe or comforted, even if they get to survive this round of budget cuts,” teacher Sean Haley said. “The pain is felt universally. We feel empathy for students because nobody wants to be in a large classroom where we can’t give them the attention they deserve.” 

As part of the cuts, Haley has been transferred to another building in the district for next year. 

Teacher layoffs and budget cuts have become an annual ritual. Many students wait for the end of the year, seeing what staff are going to be the next chosen to experience the effects of downsizing. 

Haley explained some reasons for these cuts. 

“The budget cuts are happening for a number of reasons,” he said. “First is the fact that Oregon has funded – at a decreasing percentage to the general budget – the state school fund, which means there’s less money being allocated towards public education. In a time where the state has received record tax revenues, as evidenced by the kicker that we all received as a tax refund, districts are being forced to cut because the legislature planned for a recession that never happened.” 

What Haley is describing is how many school districts across Oregon got to where they are today. Many students and staff live alongside the effects of the Oregon state legislature’s funding decisions. 

“In addition, there’s a decline in enrollment because people are having fewer kids because it’s really expensive,” Haley explained. “The cost of living and property are all really expensive. There has been a decline in the [enrollment in] Tigard-Tualatin School District because of that. After COVID, we lost a lot of students. Did they go to homeschools? Charter schools? Private schools? As education is funded on a per-student basis, when we have fewer students, we have less money.”

The list of causes for these budget cuts seems endless, and so are the effects on the student body and staff.

 “It’s hard to say [that teachers and students feel] differently because I think it feels the same,” Haley said. “For teachers who are being completely laid off, we are going to see our loss of colleagues and friends that we see daily. We are going to miss their expertise in crafting engaging lessons every day. I think that the teachers are upset that it’s going to lead to increased class sizes for next year and a loss of electives that people are passionate about teaching.”

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Parker Morgan, Staff Writer & Graphics Team

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