Merrill community discusses ideas with school board
By Anna Carrera
MERRILL (WAOW) -- The Merrill School board may need to cut up to ten percent of its budget for the 2011-2012 school year. On Thursday night, they opened the floor to people in the community for suggestions.
About 500 people turned out for the meeting and many said they're concerned for the school district's future.
The superintendent outlined a four-tiered plan, showing what the school board has been thinking in terms of cuts for next year. The first tier will almost definitely go into effect, which reduces the district budget by more than a million dollars.
After that, the board was all ears as they opened the floor to the people in the auditorium.
"I think if we do things in the school district and everybody contributes a little, including the community, I think some of these problems can be addressed, " said Merrill High School Principal Shannon Murray.
The third tier, which many said they are most concerned about, includes closing down Pine River and Maple Grove schools.
The increasing class sizes are almost inevitable. Other ideas include eliminating some programs or departments.
No final decisions were made on Thursday night but the board listened to all the suggestions.
The school board plans to consider their options over the next few months and still welcomes input from the community.