LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The Los Angeles Unified School District is holding open hearings as it mulls thousands of teacher layoffs.
The hearings before an administrative law judge will determine whether the district can let go of more than 9,500 teachers and other educational workers who have already received layoff notices.
The judge is expected to determine whether officials followed district policy by taking seniority and other factors into account when distributing the notices.
Teachers union officials say the layoffs, which affect 25 percent of its members, would increase class sizes, as well as student-to-counselor ratios. There would also be fewer nurses, psychologists and librarians.
Superintendent John Deasy says he doesn’t want to lay off any employees and remains hopeful that as many as two-thirds of the cuts can be avoided. Layoffs can be prevented if furlough and salary agreements are reached through labor unions, he said.
The district, which is working to bridge a $390 million budget gap, is required to send notices out before funding is finalized.
The hearings are expected to last through June.