Over the past seven years, the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District has seen a 500-student decline in enrollments. With the drop in students comes a drop in funding.
While enrollments look like they’re picking up again, Superintendent Dr. Steve Atwater said finances have been stretched. He noted that President Obama’s new healthcare measures will increase costs for the local district by around 10%, which works out as $1.5 million dollars.
Dr. Atwater: “The President’s healthcare system requires us to cover children aged up to 25, I believe, or it might be 26, I might have that wrong. Anyway, it’s caused us to take on more people within our system than we previously had, so that’ll drive up our costs.”
We asked Dr. Atwater if there’s naything positive coming out of this situation…
Dr. Atwater: “Um, it causes us to take a hard look at what we’re doing, as well as to figure out ways to do things more efficiently and can we save money here and there? But unfortunately, the big part of the education budget as I mentioned is people.”
Abritration about teacher salary packages between administration and teachers is ongoing.