'We have just about the shortest school year in the nation'

      EUGENE, Ore. - Oregon has one of the lowest on-time graduation rates in the country.

      And year after year as of late, school boards in Oregon - like Eugene 4J - face the annual task of trimming their budgets.

      "I think because the changes have happened gradually, we're not shocked, but we should be shocked," said Joy Marshall with Stand for Children.

      "We didn't have a long school year to begin with and now we have just about the shortest school year in the nation," Marshall said.

      On Monday, 4J presented its projections for next year.

      And while things are getting better, the budget committee will still have to deal with a predicted deficit of over $4 million.

      "Looking ahead we would really like to start restoring class size, start restoring school days," said Kerry Delf, a Eugene 4J spokesperson. "However, because we do still anticipate a deficit that's going to be challenging to do."