Buckeye Schools Facing Biggest Cuts in District History

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MEDINA, Ohio -- A local school district is facing historic cutbacks that could mean laying off employees and cutting back classes and programs.

The Buckeye Local Schools in Medina must cut $1.3 million from its budget. The superintendent says these are the deepest cuts in the school district's history.

Students of all grade levels in the Buckeye Local Schools lined the entrance to Buckeye High School to greet people attending Tuesday night's school board meeting.

"There are alot of people in our community that don't know the facts and we're just trying to get that out there," said Buckeye senior Kendra Huspaska.

Students have organized a group called "S-O-S", which stands for "Save our Schools" to promote the passage of an operating levy in August.

Residents have not passed a levy here in 18 years.

"If we have a state minimum school, then our future isn't gonna be up to par and it's really just gonna be the basics and it's really not gonna get us where we need to go in life," said Sam Brown.

"We keep looking into the past to what hasn't happened, to what we haven't done and now we need to look into the future and start to move forward," said student Jessica Banas.

Students and parents packed the high school gymnasium to speak out about budget cuts. The school district must cut $1.3 million to keep a balanced budget.

"We haven't passed a levy since my daughter was a year old," said one parent at the meeting

The superintendent says without passing a levy, the district will have to lay off 57 employees, from teachers to custodians and lunch workers. It will also have to eliminate elementary music, gym and art classes, as well as business and honors courses and there would be no school lunch, among other things.

"I'm personally not involved in music, but every single one of my friends is and it kills me to see them cry and be down because they're in fear of losing that," said one student.

"Hearing that this might happen is completely moving me and it's scary and it's just unbearable," said another student.

"They care about our kids, their kids are in our school system right now, they're telling you the honest to God, 100 percent truth," said a parent.

Students lined the front door holding candles, as people exited the meeting.

The cost of "pay to play" for sports and other extra-curricular activities will increase, while the length of the school day decreases.