Teachers Rally on Eve of MCPS Budget Vote

Teachers marched in downtown Silver Spring Monday before the school board finalizes a budget Tuesday.

“We are looking for full funding for our schools so that we do not have to have class size increases, and we do not have to have furloughs or involuntary transfers that will lead to disruption of our school communities,” said Montgomery County Education Association (MCEA) President Jennifer Martin at Veterans Plaza.

Last month the county council approved a $7.1 billion operating budget for Montgomery County, including $3.3 billion for Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS). The school board is expected to adopt the budget Tuesday afternoon.

“Do the right thing. We are pleading with you,” Martin said, urging elected officials to send more funding.

A message from MCPS on Monday stated, “While a class size increase is never the first choice,” an expected deficit of $30 million requires savings through various measures.

Martin said, “Let’s make sure that we are able to at least hold steady in providing supports for our children. Our kids deserve and need to have individualized attention, our parents deserve and need to have good connections with school staff, and the larger our classes grow the less we’re able to do what’s needed for the school community.”

According to MCPS, it is now likely that no currently-employed teachers will lose their jobs as originally estimated due to increased class sizes next school year. The school system stated that vacancies should eliminate reductions in positions.

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