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Latest 2024-25 Budget Updates

Elementary students high five graduates during the parade of honor

January 5, 2023 Update

During the last several weeks, we have shared updates regarding the district budget and also labor negotiations. Below is a summary of our situation and links to where to find the latest information.

Bargaining Recap

Salem-Keizer Public Schools has been in contract negotiations with both labor unions since April 2023. SKEA represents licensed employees (teachers, counselors, behavior specialists, etc.) and ASK ESP represents our classified employees (instructional assistants, office staff, custodians, transportation staff, etc.).

We employ more than 5,000 people who are all vital for running our 65 schools, programs, and departments that serve our students.

  • Licensed staff make up 49 percent of our workforce.
  • Classified staff make up 47.5 percent of our workforce.
  • Administrators (principals, supervisors and managers) make up 3.5 percent of our workforce, with the majority of administrators working in schools.
SKSP Workforce pie chart

SKPS Workforce by Employee Group (General Fund): 49% Licensed Staff, 47% Classified Staff, 3.5% Administrators (principals, supervisors, and managers).

This last fall, our district entered into the mediation stage of the bargaining process with each of the labor associations.

We made progress with SKEA through the first three mediation sessions and are eager to continue making meaningful progress in the fourth mediation session scheduled for January 11.

We will also meet for the second time in mediation with ASK ESP and expect that both parties actively share proposals to move this important work forward.

Reaching agreement on both contracts soon will allow the district to reconcile a significant financial gap in the 2024-25 budget.

The Budget Dilemma

In addition to mediation, the district has also been openly and strategically addressing a significant gap between district expenses and revenue for the 2024-25 school year. School districts often put most of their money into people and Salem-Keizer Public Schools is no exception. In fact, 86% of the district’s general fund pays for staff. 

Pie chart of general funds

86% of the General Fund Pays for Staff: 86% Staff, 14% Supplies and other expenses.

In December, district leaders recommended $30 million in budget adjustments, reduced spending and reductions to classified, licensed and administrator positions that are not based in classrooms.

There are still many millions of dollars that must be reduced to create a budget for the next school year. However, the final amount of reduction is unknown while the bargaining process continues.

The district has offered pay and benefit increases to both unions that we already cannot afford. Stated simply, every dollar we add to our budget is a dollar we will need to cut over the coming months.

The district is committed to urgently using mediation to reach fair, sustainable and student-centered contracts. When contracts are in place, then the district can begin the next part of the difficult and complex process of reducing the budget gap.

You can find up-to-date information and follow the bargaining process by visiting our Labor Relations webpage.

Look for an announcement soon as in February we will host a second round of community engagement sessions. This second round is an opportunity for students, families, community members, and staff to share what matters most to them.

December 6, 2023

Last week, we shared the first two parts of our first round of budget reductions to close the significant budget gap we are facing. Today, we are sharing the third and final update regarding the first-round reductions.

Video in English on YouTube for December 2023

As you watch this third video update from Superintendent Castañeda, please know that our goal is to communicate with you clearly and consistently through this process.

We have also launched a Budget Updates page that we will continually update throughout this process.

Summary Document in English and Spanish

Here is a PDF summary document in English and a PDF summary document in Spanish that provides an overview of the first-round reduction package.

Have Any Questions About The 2024-25 Budget?

Learn more and submit questions on the Budget Updates web page.

November 30, 2023

Yesterday, we shared the first update of our first round of budget reductions to close the significant budget gap we are facing. Today, we are sharing the second update regarding the first-round reductions.

Video In English On YouTube For November 2023 (2)

As we continue to state, these are district-facing reductions that insulate the experience of students in our classrooms and the staff who directly serve them. Next week, we will release a final video, which will complete recommendations for this first round of reductions. As you watch this second video update from Superintendent Castañeda, please know that our goal is to communicate with you clearly and consistently through this process.

Have Questions About The 2024-25 Budget?

Learn more and submit questions on the Budget Updates web page.

November 29, 2023

Important update for Salem-Keizer Public Schools families, staff and community from Superintendent Andrea Castañeda.

Video In English On YouTube For November 2023 (1)

Over the next few days, we will be sharing information with you about our budget situation and how we are responding to close the significant budget gap we are facing.

Specifically, we will be sharing the first round of proposed reductions, which starts at the district level and in our central offices in order to insulate the student experience in the classroom as much as possible.

As you watch the video update from Superintendent Castañeda, please know that our goal is to communicate with you clearly and consistently through this process.

Do You Have Questions About The 2024-25 Budget?

Learn more and submit questions on the Budget Updates web page.