“It was such a relief, an unbelievable relief,” Blake said.
“The reason I wanted to just end this process last night is because it just wasn’t right that we were talking about closing schools that are high performing schools that are doing great for their kids,” said Barrera. “And we didn’t need to be continuing to put people through this anxiety.”
For many parents, teachers and even students in the district, the last several budget cycles have been similar to climbing on a ride at an amusement park. This year said Blake, having more twists, turns, ups and downs than even the scariest ride ever built.
“It has been a nightmarish rollercoaster ride,” she said.
Blake does not believe the heart stopping process to find ways to trim the district’s budget is over yet.
“Oh, absolutely not,” Blake said. “You know we’ve gotten a reprieve, it was kind of a wakeup call for us.”
District leaders received a wakeup call of sorts as well. On Monday Standard and Poor’s lowered the district’s credit rating. Moody’s made the same week ago last week.
With a lower credit rating, the district may have to pay more for money it might want or need to borrow.
“The affect is really on our borrowing money on our bonds for facilities and we don’t know to what extent there is going to be, if any impact,” said Barrera.
The impact could be felt sooner than later, because the district voted unanimously Tuesday Night to look into possibly putting a school bond measure on the November 2012 ballot.
“I think the school board needs to do a better job if they’re going to do that, telling us exactly what their plans are,” said Blake.
Rather than continue to turn their anger toward the district board, Barrera would like parents to team up with board members to look to Sacramento legislators and the governor for help.
He said the board has heard a lot from outraged parents over the last couple of weeks, primarily at board meetings, but he said that passion needs to be heard in Sacramento, where monies to schools has been severely reduced over the last several years.
“Send the emails, make the phone calls,” said Barrera. “They need to hear it now because the question of whether they pull the trigger on mid-year cuts is going to be made in the next month or 6 weeks.”