The Marana Unified School District Governing Board cut about 70 positions Thursday night at its regular meeting.

Sixty-three certified staff members, six administrators, one program facilitator and one coordinator lost their jobs for the 2010-11 school year Thursday.

Certified staff includes teachers, counselors, librarians and instructional coaches.

One more teacher was scheduled to lose his or her job today at a special board meeting, bringing the total reduction to 72 employees.

"The reduction in force is in response to anticipated state budget cuts in the amount of $10.3 million for the 2010-2011 school year," said Tamara Crawley, a district spokeswoman.

The $10.3 million figure is the worst-case scenario for Marana, which has close to 13,000 students.

Cuts in the district could drop to $5.6 million if Arizona voters in May approve Proposition 100, a 1-cent-per-dollar state sales-tax increase.

More layoffs coming

A second round of layoffs is set to happen in less than 15 days, when the Governing Board will hold a regular meeting on April 22, Crawley said.

Support-staff positions are scheduled to be reduced at the meeting, Crawley said.

No decisions have been made on whether there will be cuts to student programs, such as athletics and fine arts. The status of full-day kindergarten, which the district now offers, still needs to be decided on.

Class sizes will increase for the 2010-11 school year as a result of the loss of teachers.

Kindergarten classes will go from about 21 students to 25; first grade will increase from 20 to 25 students; second grade will increase from 26 to 30 students; grades three to six will increase from 28 to 32 students; and averages at the secondary level will increase from 30 to 35 students.

Contact reporter Andrea Rivera at or 807-8430.