Shenandoah Valley School officials describe next year’s budget as bleak.
The school board has ordered wide-ranging cuts in some educational programs to make up a $2.6 million deficit.
Shenandoah Valley School District students will see fewer teachers around next school year.
The school board decided to lay off 28 teachers and eliminate or reduce some educational programs and eliminate school bus stops in Shenandoah. Also students would have to pay fees to be part of the district’s sports programs.
Getting rid of those bus stops seemed to get the most reaction from taxpayers.
“Kids can’t walk that far. I don’t know how they are going to do it,” said Ron Kaplaska of Lost Creek.
“They need the buses. They will probably have to walk from one end of town to the other. That’s not right for them,” said Aurele Bonleer of Shenandoah.
“Kids need to be on a bus to get to school because of dangers out there, very dangerous,” said Joe Romanuski of William Penn.
Others said the overall cuts are a bad move.
“It’s garbage. We paid to build a school and I have five kids that go there so it’s sort of depressing,” said Shawn DeAngelo of Lost Creek.
The Shenandoah Valley School District has reached its limit on raising taxes so residents won’t worry about a tax increase.
Carol Laukaitis of Mahanoy City has friends who live in the district. “This is just a poor district area. It’s not the public’s fault that they can’t find a job. There just isn’t anything out there,” Laukaitis said.
School board members Newswatch 16 contacted did not want to talk about the budget and we were told the superintendent of schools was unavailable.