SIOUX FALLS, SD -
The numbers are in and they are substantial. Wednesday, the state school board association released its report of how much state aid cuts to schools have cost.
Adding up the numbers districts across the state cut over $38 million from their budgets
And, parents say they can tell the difference.
It's an after school ritual - parents picking up their kids, talking about their day and what they learned. But talk to parents about the politics behind the classroom and they'll tell you.
“It isn't a rosy picture being painted out there,” parent Gordon Honerman said.
Honerman picks up his 8th grade grandson each day. He's not surprised by the numbers released, saying schools are borrowing more, relying on local property taxes, and pulling money from budget reserves just to get by. But the statistic that does surprise him and his son is news that nearly 465 administrative and staff positions have been cut statewide.
“He's going to school to be a teacher. So it kind of makes a person worry a little bit,” Honerman
“It's frustrating. Very frustrating because we want him to get the best education he can,” parent Lisa Kadinger said.
And Kadinger says she isn't convinced her 8th grader is. She's noticed it especially this year after the state cut 6.6 percent from the state's schools.
“They're putting more kids in the classrooms and then we he struggles in math, he needs help and he can't have it,” Kadinger said.
But not all the parents KELOLAND News talked with Wednesday blame the cuts or even think the state of their child's education is worse that last year.
“I've got one that's a senior right now, so yeah six more years to go.
That makes Lisa Rabine a good barometer for change in the school system,” parent Lisa Rabine said.
“Not too much change. I just don't think they have enough time for students,” Rabine said.
But Rabine says she has noticed a decrease in student-teacher time the past few years. She can't say the budget cuts are to blame. But ask any parent here if they'd like to see more cuts, and the answer is clear.
“That's insane. That's insane. They need to find the cut somewhere else,” Rabine said.
To see the detailed report from the South Dakota Association of School Boards, click here
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