Virginia is facing a $2 billion restructuring after its state board of education voted to slash more than 40 percent of the budget, leaving it without enough money to operate the state’s nearly half-million public schools.
A statewide review of the state budget will be completed by June, according to state Superintendent of Public Instruction J.C. Brown.
The school board also voted Tuesday to close more than 30 schools and reduce the size of its workforce.
In a report released Thursday, the state Education Department said Virginia had a $1.3 billion shortfall in 2016 and was on track to exceed that by 2019.
The department said it would consider reducing funding in the next budget cycle.
Terry McAuliffe has pledged to reduce Virginia’s budget by 10 percent from the current budget, to $1 billion, starting in 2019.
A spokeswoman for Brown said the governor’s administration is reviewing the recommendations of the board.
Brown has previously pledged to close all of the State’s schools, but the cuts are likely to be larger than those proposed in the report.
The governor’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The board’s decision to close 30 schools comes after the school system was criticized last month for the failure to close a $4.7 billion budget shortfall.
The Virginia Education Association said the closing of the schools would lead to a reduction in state funding for other education services, including funding for early childhood education.
State Board of Education President Thomas G. Johnson told the board that the cuts would also hurt students, particularly those who attend some of the largest public schools in the state.
The governor’s budget would result in a loss of nearly 8,000 jobs.
State Education Commissioner James H. Green said the closures would force students to leave Virginia and to move to other states.