O'Fallon schools may have to cut popular classes

5:40 PM, Oct 26, 2012   |    comments
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By Sharon Stevens Education Reporter

O'Fallon, IL (KSDK) - Music, art, and other courses are on the chopping block in a growing Metro East school district.

Educators in O'Fallon School District 90 say the lack of state funding might force them to drop certain popular classes.

But parents could step in to help out. They've done it before.

Here's the situation: school officials say they are looking at a $2 million shortfall because that's how much the state will owe the district by next year.

Band class is a big deal at Fulton Junior High School in O'Fallon, Illinois. To some students, music and art are just as important to them as the basic academics.

Like most Illinois school districts, O'Fallon District 90 has had staff layoffs and cutbacks because of the lack of state funding and the poor economy.

Officials are looking at more cuts over the next two years.

District officials say one of the things that has really helped out during these tough financial times has been having parent volunteers in places such as the library.

Two years ago state budget cuts forced a reduction in library services and personnel. That's when parents such as Julie Ziegler stepped in.

Now parents may have to consider what they can do to help keep extra-curricular classes.

At a series of community meetings, there's been talk about proposing a tax-hike or bond issue. Other options include parents paying for musical instruments or other items or helping to pay part of a teacher's salary to keep classes from being eliminated.

The next school community forum takes place Monday, October 29th at 6:30 p.m. at Fulton Junior High.

KSDK

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