Just the treat of losing some of its funding has one small Texas School district that serves children from nearby Randolph Air Force Base cutting teachers, reading specialists, a librarian and eliminating Advanced Placement science courses reports the Stars and Stripes.
Nearly half of the Randolph Field Independent School District’s annual budget of $12.7 million comes from federal “Impact Aid,” which helps fund school districts that serve large military populations.
But Impact Aid is also one of the many federal government programs facing an automatic, across-the-board 10 percent cut on Jan. 2 if Congress and the White House fail to reach a budget compromise to avert sequestration …
“Impact Aid is the lifeblood of our district,” said Billy Walker, the Randolph district school superintendent. So rather than cross his fingers and hope that the politicians in Washington would come up with a compromise, Walker decided to incorporate the sequestration cuts into this school year’s budget, which started in August.
The Randolph district is not alone. More than a third of the school districts that receive federal funds or “Impact Aid” cut teachers and staff and delayed maintenance according to a survey conducted by the National Association of Federally Impacted Schools.
The survey found that 36 percent of the 334 school districts decided to make tough cutbacks in their budgets at the beginning of the school year to prepare for possible sequestration.