it’s no secret Richfield, like many school districts, is struggling to balance its budget while maintaining a quality education system.
While school districts typically look to levies to increase course and activity offerings in schools, , would only maintain the district’s offerings, according to Superintendent Bob Slotterback.
“I’ve been asked a number of times what this money will be used for,” Slotterback told the in September. “If this referendum passes, we will not be giving the public anymore programs or additions, [but] simply maintain the district.”
Voting yes to the referendum would revoke the current per-pupil-number of $301.40 and authorize $717.40 as the new number—a net increase of $416. , said the new annual costs to taxpayers per household, with an average home value of $185,800, would be $119.
So what happens if it doesn’t pass? Staff cuts and class sizes will continue to rise, while course offerings, activities and those who work in school maintenance would face cuts.
“We’ve reduced everywhere we possibly can," Slotterback said in September.
“We’ve turned the heat down, we’ve extended our bus routes, we’ve reduced travel, we’ve eliminated training and on and on and on and on," he said. “But we got to the point this year where the vast majority of our cuts had to be teachers, and we’ve raised our class size by an average of three.”
Slotterback predicted elementary classes exceeding 30 students and high school classes in the 40s without the levy passing. At the same time, the district is down to 57 custodians, from 107 in 1982.
Slotterback said some have asked about cutting sports entirely, however that would only give the district $650,000 more to work with. Most important, Slotterback said, not offering sports would make “enrollment fall off the table,” thereby worsening financial conditions.