Harlem School Board Approves Budget Cuts

By: Lauren Kravets, Brian Doogs Email
By: Lauren Kravets, Brian Doogs Email

UPDATE--More then one million dollars in cuts will occur for the 2013-2014 school year. The Harlem School Board voted unanimously tonight on those cuts.

MACHESNEY PARK (WIFR) -- Budget cuts are already hitting the Harlem School District. Tonight, members of the Harlem School Board will vote on district-wide program changes, which include extended and new cuts.

Some of the new eliminations include layoffs, reducing para-educations and two PE teacher, among others. Under federal guidelines, the District is required to increase breakfast and lunch prices by 10 cents. Maple Elementary would return to a normal calendar year, the District would also continue to work without another assistant principal and administrators would go a second year with a pay freeze. The Superintendent says less money from the State is fueling these cuts.

"It becomes very frustrating because there's no other way to make up that amount the state is taking. We can't get more property taxes we can't just go out and get more money,” said Superintendent Dr. Julie Morris.

The district is anticipating a $2 million dollar deficit by the end of this year. With these cuts, they’ll save more than a million dollars. Over the past three years, they’ve made cuts totaling nearly seven million dollars.

Again, the changes are expected to be approved at tonight’s school board meeting. Members will meet at 6:00 to take a vote.

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