Evergreen School District takes public input on $15 million budget shortfall

Mike Merlino, interim superintendent for the Evergreen School District, speaks during a meeting with the community about the district's $15 million shortfall. (KATU Photo)

The Evergreen School District is facing some tough choices.

On Thursday, it took feedback from the public to figure out how to cut $15 million from the budget.

Evergreen is far from alone in dealing with lean times -- 253 out of the 295 school districts in Washington are facing budget shortfalls.

But for Evergreen, this is the largest deficit it has ever had.

“We’ve gone through cuts before in (20)09-10, I think we cut about 9 million, in 11-12 is was about 11 million. So this number, 15 million, as of right now is the biggest we’ve had,” Mike Merlino, interim superintendent for the district.

Administrators met in small groups with students, teachers, and other stakeholders in public education.

There are three more meetings like this one scheduled. The input will be used in deciding what to cut.

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