PATERSON - The Paterson School District will need to lay off nearly 300 teachers and staff for the 2015-2016 school year due to budget reasons.
According to the district, 175 teachers and 116 instructional and personal aides will lose their jobs. The district will also not fill another 154 vacation teaching positions due to the budget.
The cuts have greatly upset many of the students and parents in Paterson. Many say they are worried it will affect the quality of the education their children receive.
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"We need more teachers because our children need a good education. They are our future," says Lillian Randolph, one of the parents. "Without our teachers, what is going to happen to the children?"
Principals met with assistant superintendents to determine which positions would have the smallest impact on instruction. The superintendent says teacher cuts will be spread out across the district.
The Paterson Education Fund advocacy group released a statement about the layoffs. They fear less teachers will lead to increased classroom sizes.
"Overcrowded classrooms are likely to lead to more behavior issues and increased suspensions," the statement said in part.
The district blames flat state funding as the reason for the cuts.