Livingston Parish schools declare financial emergency
The cash-strapped Livingston Parish School System is in emergency mode.
The school system set itself up for possible layoffs and larger classes at Thursday night's school board meeting when it declared financial exigency for the 2011-2012 school year.
The district says the amount of money it gets paid per student is staying the same for the third year in a row, despite record growth in Livingston Parish classrooms.
Superintendent Bill Spear said, "In all fairness to the powers that be, they need to be aware of the numbers we are up against in order to open up our doors and have school next year."
Board members say the potential scale-back in schools, which could include teachers losing their jobs, hurts the whole community.
"It's the economic driver for our parish, it has been for a long time. You go out there, and see the people are here because of the school system, the businesses are here because of the people. They're strangling what we've for so long hung our hats on," said Buddy Mincey, Jr.
"It very much would devastate me dealing with the schools if they started having to cut jobs in Livingston Parish," said Don Tavlin.
Kayla Landry said, "That means instead of us having 20 kids per teacher, we're going to have 30 kids per teacher and that's just like a lot of other parishes that we chose to not go to."
The district hopes legislators hear the cry for help and finds money during the up-coming session. Spear hopes other districts push for it too.