Shortening the school year by 10 days is not ideal, but for the Commerce City School System, that’s a better option than laying off teachers.
A small system, Commerce could not make the kind of staff cuts it would have taken to operate under its reduced state funding without seriously affecting its ability to provide basic education. Even without staff reductions, it’s hard for the Commerce system to cover all of the required classes and the few amenities it offers, particularly at the high school. That’s one of the challenges of maintaining a small independent school system.
Hopefully, this is just a stop-gap measure, but all indications are that state revenues will not rebound quickly. School systems all over Georgia are trying to keep their essential programs as state funding declines. As they make personnel cuts or shorten the year, the level of services to school children falls. You can’t continually reduce funding and expect the level of educational services to remain unchanged.
Although it did not institute a layoff, the city system is not filling vacancies that occur by attrition. Fewer people doing more work for less pay is a short-term strategy, but it’s not a tactic likely to yield good results in the long-term.