State Superintendent of Schools Tom Luna wants to tap $52.8 million from the public schools earning reserve fund of the state endowment fund to avoid deeper budget cuts to schools. "Simply put this is a one-time drawdown of an excess reserve fund," he said, "... to offset the reductions of the public schools budget." The reserve fund would still have a year's worth of payments in it, he said.
Luna said he also wants to drain two other funds and make a series of cuts. Otherwise, he said, schools will have to cut more than $130 million next year. "I will not sugar-coat this. We must be honest with Idaho's parents and patrons," he said. "These cuts will be painful and, done wrong, will do significant damage to student achievement," he said.