The Mildred High School band won’t be attending those first couple of games with the football team, one of dozens of cost-saving measures being instituted this coming school year to help the district recoup the $400,000 in lost in state funding.
“We will be looking at making significant cuts over the school year, trying not to cut salaries,” explained Mildred Superintendent Becky Burns.
Monday evening, the Mildred school board will have a workshop on the proposed cuts and the 2011-12 budget. What they’ll see is a 4 percent cut in income, and cuts major and minor everywhere. Mildred’s annual budget is just over $6 million.
“It hurts, like everybody else’s,” Burns said. “We’re no different from every place else. We’re tightening up, looking at what’s necessary.”
The district’s appraisals didn’t change much, nor are many new children moving into the district, but the state did cut out $400,000 in funding, and could make more, deeper cuts next year.
A small saving grace was the federal stimulus grant, Burns said.
“Our EdJobs stimulus money is $137,510 but we will only get this one time, so we can use it this year to help with salaries, but next year we will have to make up this amount locally,” she said.
The current goal is to try to make the cuts without laying off any employees, Burns said.
“We’ve always run real lean, we’ve never been over-employed, so we consider all personnel essential,” she said. “We’re trying to make it with expenditures.
“Whatever we do with this budget we’re going to try to take care of our employees. It’s almost the same thing as in Blooming Grove,” Burns said. “We’ve got the best group of people to try to work through hard times with. I have no doubt we’ll be fine and our kids will be fine and we’ll have a positive spirit.”
Having the band skip the out-of-town, non-district games saves money and lets the kids avoid marching in the heat, a double benefit, Burns said.
“Those little things can make a difference, and those things add up,” she said.