14 Mar 2018

Guam cuts education spending

8:11 am on 14 March 2018

Public schools in Guam face a hiring freeze and will have to forego using 168 on-call substitute teachers from next week, as cost-cutting measures hit the education department.

A young boy writes at a desk at a primary school.

A young boy writes at a desk at a primary school. Photo: 123RF

The territory's government faces a $US67 million revenue shortfall this year because of federal tax cuts, with government departments forced to bring in several austerity measures.

The governor has asked lawmakers to temporarily increase business tax by 50 percent, and several other measures have been proposed, but none have yet been approved.

The Pacific Daily News reports that, in a memo, the education superintendent Jon Fernandez has also proposed a third phase of cuts as his department tries to cover a $US19.6 million budget shortfall.

This includes delaying the start of a new school year until 1 October, closing campuses after hours through the summer, and bringing a 32-hour work week beginning 1 July.

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