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Stimulus saved 6,000 education jobs in L.A., report says

More than 250,000 full- and part-time jobs escaped budget cuts nationwide. A more complete accounting will be posted online next week.

October 20, 2009|Joe Markman

WASHINGTON — Some 250,000 education jobs have been saved or created by the economic stimulus package, according to a White House report released Monday.

The news previews what will be a more comprehensive accounting to be posted by the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board on its website next week.

"There is a lot more work to be done, but we applaud those districts that have successfully used stimulus funding to stave off catastrophic layoffs and invest in critical reforms," Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in a statement. Of the $97.4 billion in education funding included in the stimulus bill, $67.6 billion has been spent.

According to the report, more than 6,000 education jobs in Los Angeles were saved by stimulus funds. New York City was able to retain 4,000 positions, while 7% of the teaching corps in Scottsbluff, Neb. -- 18 people -- kept their jobs.

"It also means that we were able to avert massive class [size] expansion," Melody Barnes, director of President Obama's domestic policy council, said at a news conference.

The 250,000 number includes part-time and full-time positions.

In Las Vegas, where 1,100 teaching jobs have been saved by the stimulus, the local tourism economy has been hit particularly hard -- leading to budget cuts totaling $250 million in the Clarke County School District, spokesman David Roddy said.

"[The stimulus] was a tremendous benefit not only to the district but also to individuals who were facing loss of employment," Supt. Walt Rulffes wrote in a letter to the Nevada Legislature.

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joseph.markman@latimes.com

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