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Harry Bronson says RCSD needs $35 million from state to stay afloat


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — The Rochester City School District superintendent is continuing to lobby Albany for aid to close part of the district’s budget gap. The district needs $35 million from the state.

Superintendent Terry Dade said 800 jobs could be on the line if those funds don’t come in. Just over a month ago the district cut 100 teachers. Some parents say their kids just can’t go through that again.

Seanea Smith said both of her kids lost a teacher in the recent round of cuts.

“Just those 100 teachers they cut and it was hugely traumatic to the kids just for 100, so 800, I mean that impacted two of my kids in the same house that go to two different schools imagine how that will impact other families,” said Smith.

Smith, along with other parents, have gone to Albany to lobby the state for money. $35 million is the magic number to make it through the rest of the year.

Harry Bronson is a state assemblyman for the 138th district. He’s in session in Albany now, fighting for this money. But he said that money should come with an outside fiscal and academic monitor.

“I say we need to change the institutional culture in the school district and so I think with the monitor in place, oversight over the finances, oversight to make sure we are implementing the academic strategies that have been put in place, and with partners throughout the community being supportive that’s how we’re gonna make sure we turn this around and we have to for the children of the school district,” Bronson said.

There are currently around 6,000 positions in the RCSD, with 3,300 of them being teachers. Cutting 800 of them would be around 24 percent.

Superintendent Terry Dade said he should have an answer from Governor Cuomo’s office in late March.

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