WEST FRANKFORT, IL (KFVS) - Times are tough for Illinois school districts facing serious budget shortfalls as it comes time to balance the books for the next school year.
The West Frankfort school district is one. They made drastic cuts to their staff and programs on Monday.
It all stems from the state aid, which has been reduced by more than $800 million across the state, and when it comes to local school budgets something has to give.
Greg Goins is the superintendent of the West Frankfort school district.
On Monday, the board had to make some tough decisions. The district decided to eliminate four part time teaching positions; art, home economics a vocational position and band.
One of the full time physical education positions will be eliminated. That staff member will then be moved to a computer science position.
Several positions will change to part time, including an administrative position, the supervisor of special education and the district technology director will work for 10 months instead of 12.
Goins said over the last three years almost $3 million was lost district wide and cuts were unavoidable this year.
"It is difficult in any district to absorb that kind of cut so gradually we have been using our reserve funds through the years, but over a period of time, those funds have been depleted," he said. "So, we are really living year to year in terms of what personnel we can afford to have and just continue to make sound financial decisions."
The district will also cut $25,000 from the athletic budget.
They were able to avoid raising fees to parents.
Goins said he is working on writing 20 to 25 rift notices for teacher's assistants.
If the district isn't able to save $200,000 next year, those positions could face cuts as well.