East Ramapo approves school plan for voters

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The East Ramapo Board of Education passed a $198 million budget plan for 2010-2011 this week, which includes more than 100 layoffs.

Under the plan, the Hillcrest Elementary School building could be sold or leased, but no cuts were made to transportation, music programs, sports or extracurricular activities. Incentives were also offered to some teachers to retire early.

School Superintendent Dr. Ira Oustatcher says cuts had to be made because the district is expecting to lose millions of dollars in state aid.

"If we can maintain the majority of our programs in these tough economic times, that may be the best we can do," he said.

The budget goes to the public for a vote May 11. If it fails, an austerity budget may be put into place.

For video from protests against East Ramapo school cuts, go to your digital cable box and select iO Extra on Ch. 612.

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