The Triton School Superintendent held a public presentation Thursday night to discuss the status of funding for public schools.
“The money that we used to get we no longer get,” stated Donna Burroughs. “Triton, for instance, is receiving $1.7 million less in 2014 than we received in 2004. Everyone knows that the cost of everything is going up so it’s making it very difficult for our schools to maintain programs and staffing as it has been in the past.”
Donna Burroughs added that the biggest catalyst in the lack of funding is the state takeover of the General Fund which pays salaries, insurance and operating costs.
“A superintendent could set the tax rate so that they could raise enough money to fund all of the things that are needed for school. In the last several years, the General Fund has been totally controlled by the state. They tell us how much money we’re getting. They’ve made that a per student amount. For instance, at Triton we get $5,500 per student. We can’t control any of that money. It makes it very difficult to plan because you never know who’s moving or who’s coming until the year has already started.”
She stated that schools are forced to cut staff and programs and “it’s only going to worse”.
Burroughs also commented that schools are having to go to the taxpayers to ask for referendum funding to keep their school corporations functioning.