Crawford County schools face tough decisions

Local News
Crawford County schools financial futures_05248579-159532

Erie School District’s financial future is uncertain at best,  and they aren’t alone.

School districts across the Commonwealth are also facing financial struggles.

Crawford Central School District passed a preliminary budget Monday night that includes a property tax increase of 1.75 mills.

That’s the maximum allowed without voter approval, according to the Meadville Tribune.

Some property owners in the district are against the increase.

However, Tom Chalmers says he would rather pay more in taxes if it  insures quality education.

Chalmers says, “I think it’s probably necessary mainly because of the things going on in Harrisburg right now. Forcing the schools to borrow money when it shouldn’t be necessary.”

Crawford Central isn’t the only school district in Crawford county facing financial struggles. Penncrest School District is facing major cuts.

Matt Wilcox says, “28 teachers. 15, i believe it’s 15 high school, secondary and 13 elementary. So that’s a lot.”

Wilcox is the husband of a teacher at Cambridge Springs Elementary School.

He says her job is one of the dozens on the line.

Wilcox says, “Ultimately it’s hurting the children. That’s what this all comes down to. It’s about the students, and the more teachers you cut, the worse off the students are going to be.”

Maggie Fry’s daughter goes to Saegertown Junior Senior High School and says it’s not the school district fault.

Fry says, “I honestly think that until Harrisburg gets it’s act together, I think it would have Penncrest and other school districts to operate at a deficit until we get the money that is actually owed to us.”

A Facebook group now has more than 600 members supporting the teachers and staff that could lose their jobs.

Wilcox says the goal of the group is to help encourage the school board to find alternative ways to save money.

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