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Alaska’s Schools Face Cuts at Every Level Over Oil Collapse

ANCHORAGE — Alaska’s schools are bleeding red ink.

The University of Alaska has said it will reorganize its campuses and may have to cut more than 8 percent of the staff, but professors are already heading for the exits. The state’s largest public school district, here in Anchorage, is cutting 49 teaching positions and increasing class sizes. And in tiny rural schools like Nightmute — which has 80 students in a village of about 300 people — the pain has almost reached the point of paralysis: Five of the school’s six teachers are leaving at the end of the school year.

The most troubling part, teachers, professors and administrators across the state said, is that with a roughly $3.5 billion state budget shortfall, things could get much worse — not least for morale.