HUTSONVILLE, Ill. (WTHI) - Last school year we told you how Hutonville’s school district faced an uphill battle to break even in the face of state budget cuts. This week News 10 returned to Hutsonville and found a district in better financial shape, but working with less.
In the winter of the last school year, we walked the halls of the Hutsonville schools with their superintendent Julie Kraemer. She told us about the close to $500,000 deficit facing the schools in the upcoming school year. Eight months later that number has been trimmed significantly.
"We went from $418,000 to this year where we are projected at about a $131,000 (deficit),” Kraemer said. “So still not great, but still a big change from where we were."
On Monday, students left school at their usual time and headed to their usual buses. But, this year their usual bus routes aren't the same. Just one of the more inventive ways the school was forced to cut costs.
"We were able to reduce miles on some buses, raised miles on others, but overall we cut miles and we took one entire route off,” Kraemer explained. “We were able to consolidate and put those kids on other routes and that's been a savings."
However, the more realistic cuts came as well. Before this school year two full time teachers had to be let go, fees were raised for athletics and clubs, and the administrative positions cut down from four to two and a half.
That leaves Julie Kraemer wearing two hats these days: superintendent and the Hutsonville High School principal.
The uncertain future remains the state of rural schools in the state of Illinois.
Right on cue, Thursday’s early winter storm dumped snow and ice on the Wabash Valley but county highway crews were a step ahead of the weather’s arrival pre-treating the 897 miles of pavement in the county.
A fire has engulfed the First Prairie Creek Church in Vigo County.
A four car accident in eastern Vigo County leaves one person dead.
Workers at a new eatery in Terre Haute are preparing to open.
Otter Creek Township is on its way to getting a new fire station.
Knox County Commissioner Don Halter is ahead of the game when it comes to winter weather preparedness. But the man-power may have a hard time running full throttle. The Knox County highway budget took big cuts in 2013.