Facing The Sequester: What It Would Mean For Washington Schools? - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Facing The Sequester: What It Would Mean For Washington Schools?

Posted: Updated:

SPOKANE, Wash – Funding for education is one of the biggest things on the chopping block, if the so-called "sequester" budget crisis isn't resolved in Washington D.C.

According to a report from the White House, Washington "will lose approximately $11,606,000 in funding for primary and secondary education, putting around 160 teacher and aide jobs at risk. In addition about 11,000 fewer students would be served and approximately 50 fewer schools would receive funding." 

On top of that, the report states "Washington will lose approximately $11,251,000 in funds for about 140 teachers, aides, and staff who help children with disabilities."

Money the Spokane Guilds' School and Neuromuscular Center can't afford to lose.

"I'd say we're at the end of the rope. If some of these cuts come through, it just means some of these kids aren't going to get service. It's just that simple," said Executive Director Dick Boysen.

One of the 138 children enrolled at the Guilds' School is Brody Baumann.  At a young age, he began showing signs of developmental disabilities.  He couldn't sit up on his own, and was getting a number of ear infections.  While he hasn't been formally diagnosed, his father says he may have autism or a neurological problem.

"You just feel so blessed to have a child, and slowly but surely you notice something's not right, and you feel really helpless," his father, Kyle Baumann told KHQ.

Children at the Guilds' School may have autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, hearing or vision impairments, or even a history of being abused.

"The ones that live - we put them back together," Boysen added.

He said funding has been shrinking for years, and the seven sources of government funding the school gets only covers 2/3 of the budget; they have to privately raise the rest ($1 million) every year to simply stay open.

And if that budget picture got any worse, the school would be at a breaking point.

"Since 90% of our expense is salaries, you know what would happen, we've got to lose people if these cuts come through," Boysen said.  "So it would be devastating."

Devastating to the school – and its families – who've already come so far.

In the seven months Brody has been there, he's made big advances, including interacting with tablets, making more eye contact, trying to walk and trying to talk.

"It's great because we know that he's learning and he's progressing," Baumann said.

"I don't know what the solution is, but the solution is not to take services away from little kids.  I do know that," Boysen said.

Head Start also put out a press release about the sequester, saying it's bracing for an across-the-board 5.3% budget cut. 

The Plummer Worley School District in Idaho is also speaking out against the sequester, calling it "not right, not fair, and inconceivable."

To learn more about the cuts that may come if no resolution is reached, visit:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/sequester-factsheets/Washington.pdf

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/sequester-factsheets/Idaho.pdf

  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane Police work to implement body cameras

    Spokane Police work to implement body cameras

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 10:23 PM EDT2014-08-21 02:23:21 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane Police Department plans to equip 15 to 20 officers with body cameras starting the first week of September. Police Chief Frank Straub says his team still has a lot of details to work out, but that this is something that has been on their radar for quite some time.More >>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - The Spokane Police Department plans to equip 15 to 20 officers with body cameras starting the first week of September. Police Chief Frank Straub says his team still has a lot of details to work out, but that this is something that has been on their radar for quite some time.More >>
  • Father of Rebecca West speaks about potential release of Michael Tarbert: 'It's been a living hell'

    Father of Rebecca West speaks about potential release of Michael Tarbert: 'It's been a living hell'

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 7:32 PM EDT2014-08-20 23:32:40 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Michael West cannot believe that the man suspected of killing his daughter Rebecca may once again walk the streets of Spokane.“It's very unacceptable to me,” West told KHQ. More >>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Michael West cannot believe that the man suspected of killing his daughter Rebecca may once again walk the streets of Spokane.“It's very unacceptable to me,” West told KHQ. “A 55-year-old man is able to go home to his family, and my daughter can't come home to her mother. I'm very surprised.” West says his daughter's death destroyed his family. More >>
  • Wheat farmers taking a double hit as prices drop and weather takes its toll

    Wheat farmers taking a double hit as prices drop and weather takes its toll

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 7:29 PM EDT2014-08-20 23:29:24 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Experts with the Washington Grain Commission say wheat production is at its lowest since 2008. Glen Squires with the Washington Grain Commission says the current average price per bushel of wheat is around $6.20 down from last year's price at $7.53. Dry conditions in Eastern Washington is also taking its toll on wheat farmers. More >>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Experts with the Washington Grain Commission say wheat production is at its lowest since 2008. Glen Squires with the Washington Grain Commission says the current average price per bushel of wheat is around $6.20 down from last year's price at $7.53. Dry conditions in Eastern Washington is also taking its toll on wheat farmers. More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KHQ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.