South Range Board of Education candidates speak at forum

A forum was held for South Range Schools Board of Education candidates on Oct. 27, 2015.

BEAVER TWP., Ohio (WKBN) – It was a packed house at South Range High School’s auditorium on Tuesday night, as 10 candidates made their case for three open seats on the district’s Board of Education.

Some of the candidates talked about financial issues at the school district.

South Range Local School District Superintendent Dennis Dunham said everything is fine financially, however.

“Our fourth year in our financial forecast appears to be black instead of red,” he said. “I believe our waters are starting to calm in terms of the financial impact, not just South Range, but all schools have endured.”

The district’s May levy, which would have prevented the district from facing a nearly $500,000 deficit by 2017, failed. Dunham said that levy failure has led the district to cut costs.

“We, like all other schools, have to be prudent in our cost-saving measures, in terms of employees and purchase services,” he said.

This past November, the board had to cut an elementary school program. Parents at South Range said they are focused on the well-being and education of their children.

“I’d like to see all decisions made around the kids. I want a well-rounded education for all three of my children. I have one in elementary, in middle and high school. I see it from all different sides,” said parent Nicole Fryfogle.

Another parent, Melissa Humphries, said she is hoping for positive change.

“I’d obviously like to see change, because my kids go here,” she said. “We love the community, and we love the school, and no one wants to see that division.”

Superintendent Dunham said money coming into schools is a statewide problem.

“There’s reduced funding across the state in terms of school districts,” he said. “I don’t want to say at this point we’re having financial difficulties, because as I mentioned, we’re in black for the next four years.”

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