Sunnyside schools facing $2.6 million deficit next year - Tucson News Now

Sunnyside schools facing $2.6 million deficit next year

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

It was standing room only at the Sunnyside School District as hundreds of teachers, parents and students rallied to keep music programs in their school.

Tonight the school board discussed the challenges the district will be facing due to the override that did not pass in the November election. In fact, the district will be facing a $2.6 million budget deficit for next year.

One of those programs that could be affected would be fifth grade band and orchestra.

The superintendent says as of now the music program will not be cut for next year, but if an override does not pass next November it could happen.

He says this is a challenge because the state is not funding education and it's putting a burden on local taxpayers.

As for teachers and students, they say they'll do whatever it takes to make sure music stays in their schools.

Robert Reyes, a Sunnyside teacher said, "It's extremely important because it's a good outlet for the kids.  A lot of the kids, some of the reasons why  they come to school is because of band and orchestra."

Jordan Espinoza, a Sunnyside orchestra student said, "If these programs close I don't think they will have any drive for creativity.  I think its just a great experience to be out here and let them know that we love orchestra. Its part of our life."

Other programs that may be cut include the family and resource wellness center and pre-kindergarten.

The Sunnyside school board will make a decision on January 22.

Copyright 2012 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

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