Bedford County Supervisors Vote on School Funding - - ABC13

Bedford County Supervisors Vote on School Funding


Reporter: Lauren Compton l Videographer: Jemon Haskins

Bedford Co., VA- Bedford County Supervisors voted to give most of their $3.5 million surplus to the school board. But the school board says it was counting on all of it.

The meeting got very tense at times, and it could mean the school system could have to make cuts to balance their budget. Parents say their kids will pay a price for this.

In Monday night's packed Bedford County Supervisors meeting, it was clear where many stood on the issue of school funding. They wanted all $3.5 million in surplus money to go to the schools. Many residents had pointed things to say about funding county schools that round out the bottom of the list in the state for school funding.

"The really unfortunate thing is our children don't have the option of shopping around for a school system that doesn't rank next to last," said Robert Ashwell, a Bedford County resident.

Parents stood up and spoke for their little ones.

"My fear is any last-minute cuts in a budget cycle that has already been short-circuited by drama at the state level would mean layoffs, number one, larger class sizes to which I've spoken," said Fred Glover, a Bedford County parent.

Despite pleas from parents, the board unanimously voted to give the school system less money. The schools get $2.75 million, not $3.5 million. The Supervisors will put nearly a million into the County's General Capital Fund. It was a bitter decision for some.

"Our children, who no longer compete in a market across the country and across the state, now have to compete with China and India. They are going to pay later," said Glover.

Some supervisors did want to give the schools all of the money. But supervisors say there were a lot of other costs to consider. The School Board will now have to go back to the drawing board. They will have a meeting this Thursday to make changes in their budget.

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