How Oklahoma School Funding Cuts Affect Area Schools - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

How Oklahoma School Funding Cuts Affect Area Schools

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Talking funding for your child's education. We told you before, about budget cuts.  That includes the Oklahoma State Department of Education cutting annual funding by about 5%.  KTEN's Meredith Saldana has more on this story.

Plainview schools in Ardmore say the 5% is a huge cut, but they've taken steps to help soften the blow.

For the first time since the state's 2002-2003 funding crisis, the average amount of money allocated for each student in the state's weighted funding formula, has decreased.

Plainview Interim Superintendent Julie Altom says former superintendent Steve Merlin had already been preparing financially in case cuts did become a reality.

Altom says now, rather than cutting one big program, they plan to look at the bigger picture.

"This is something that I am taking a look at," says Altom.  "I spent time discussing with Mr. Merlin where we can make cuts. And, really it's a matter of just being extremely conservative right now and really looking at our needs versus our desires and wants."

Plainview schools have lost about $400,000 as a result of the budget cuts.

And Altom says the bond issue, they're hoping to pass in March, will also help off-set the cut in state funding.

I also spoke with Dickson School Superintendent, Sherry Howe, who says the funding cut will affect them more next year.

They've lost about $600,00 in over all funding.

As a result, Howe says the Dickson staff won't be receiving raises and they'll have to evaluate all travel expenses, like workshops and field trips.

She says thankfully they've saved some money in years past and are able to use some of that money from the rainy day fund.

Ardmore and Lone Grove superintendents were in meetings Wednesday and unavailable for comment.

-Meredith Saldana, KTEN News