Budget concerns for Pender school district
Our state’s financial woes are having a trickle down effect on local school districts. Many districts are having to tighten their belts with a probable cut in state funding looming. School board members in Pender County are now looking at options if tough decisions have to be made.
In Pender, 95 percent of the district’s operating costs come from the state, so with the potential of a 3, 5, or even a 7 percent cut in funding, area schools would be out millions of dollars.
There are several possible scenarios. The biggest blow would be to Pender Success Academy. Closing the alternative school could save the county $900,000.
Under a 5 percent budget cutback, officials would also consider consolidating bus routes to alleviate transportation costs.
Schools could see a reduction in their teaching assistant staff as well as teacher training. Central office staff could see pay cuts, and funding for textbooks could be reduced.
The biggest loss could come from Pender Success Academy closing it’s doors. If the school were to close, both students and staff would be absorbed back into traditional schools.
All area school districts are anxiously awaiting the state legislature’s final budget decisions. They hope to hear from the senate within the next few days. The house will have to submit their proposals before final approval.
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