Drastic cuts to be made in Cave Creek school district

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Entire school may have to close

CAVE CREEK - Another Valley school district is facing major cuts.

The Cave Creek district is considering drastic measures to make their budget work, including the closing of an entire school.

A meeting wrapped up Monday night with no decision on what to cut yet. Many are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.

The Odyssey of the Mind Club at Desert Arroyo Middle School is headed to states and parents are thrilled. Sonya Brooks, one parent, says, "The jumps she's made. They've done so much to help her in her education."

The strong school is the reason Brooks moved here. She and her 6th -grade daughter say closing the middle school would be devastating. Cheyenne, Brooks' daughter admits, "At lunch that's one main thing we talk aboutvery important to us." Her mom adds, " There has to be a better solution than closing the school."

A huge crowd took that message to the school board which has to cut as much as $5 million from their budget. Now the big question, according to a parent, was "What do we have to do to keep the school open?"

School Board Member Susan Clancy replied, "Ask your teachers, ask yourselves, what is it we can give up'?"

Some parents went with ideas to avoid closing a school. Yolanda, another parent, says, "In this affluent community people like me are waiting to be asked to contribute."

With teachers, art, music, and physical education programs all on the chopping block in Cave Creek, some say they would rather close a school building and save people and programs.

Linda Wilkinson admits, "To me you're going to have to close a school to make budget."

It was an unfortunate debate with no winners raging Monday night in Cave Creek and in districts across the state over the next few months.

A lot of struggling school districts are waiting and hoping the state will get federal stimulus dollars and use that money for education in order to prevent massive cuts.