Superintendent: More Education Funding Needed
December 19, 2011, 9:49 PM
MOBRIDGE, SD -
When you hear the governor's budget proposal has an increase for education, you might think things are looking up for schools.
But Mobridge's superintendent says there are several factors to consider from district to district and his is still crunching numbers to make the school budget work.
The amount of money the Mobridge-Pollock School District would receive per student next year under Governor Dennis Daugaard's proposal compared to this year would be a 0.8 percent increase.
Superintendent Tim Frederick comes up with that number when comparing both base funding and one-time money from one year to the next.
"We can't move forward on 0.8 percent. We cut back so much last year it's going to be very difficult for us to say we could bring back certain programs that we thought we might be able to," Frederick said.
Mobridge-Pollock hopes to bring back a science and math position cut in the high school. And there are other examples too.
"This is for your core classes. To have our kids college and career-ready in the future, it will be difficult with the funding that we're presently receiving," Frederick said.
The district has local factors adding to challenges as well. It's still receiving money this year as part of the Mobridge-Pollock consolidation package but that stops coming next year.
And the district is expecting a cut in some federal funding. Money sent to districts based on the number of low-income students could drop. Mobridge Pollock is bracing for $30,000 less as a result.
"We do have some challenges ahead of us. But we do feel right now that the legislators, if they have an opportunity to re-examine what Governor Daugaard's proposal was, that they may find a way to bring back some additional funding to the schools," Frederick said.
Mobridge-Pollock has an opt out in place. It was supposed to help expand curriculum. Now it'll be used to prevent the school from deficit spending. The district had been using $270,000 of that opt out. But now it'll use the full $350,000 a year.
Frederick also says he's happy to see the governor propose training for teacher development in his budget.
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