With a four to three vote, the Rapid City School Board approved a plan to trim $4 million from the school district's budget Wednesday night.
The board discussed the plan in length before the decision.
The biggest proposed cut would eliminate 30 full-time positions from the city's middle schools. Remaining teachers would add another class period to their daily schedules in exchange for their planning period. And while the measure passed, the debate is far from over.
"It's a huge step backwards, huge. I don't think it will, I think it's going to be hard to calculate the person-to-person, the human cost," School Board Member Bret Swanson said.
"Now, the administration will be able to move forward with some budget planning. We'll be able to move forward with our instructional calendar, see what that's going to look like. And we'll be able to move forward with hiring," School Board President Jeff Nelson said.
The district hopes the staff reductions will come from teachers retiring. It employs around 1,000 teachers.