Richland One superintendent urges employees to contact Sanford

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - On Monday, the superintendent of one of the Midlands' largest school districts urged his districts employees to take action.

Dr. Percy Mack sent a memo obtained by WIS News 10 to all Richland School District One employees.

Even before the stimulus standoff began, Dr. Mack already knew that his school district had a tough year ahead.

"In Richland One and the surrounding districts, we're all fighting for our lives right now," said Dr. Mack.

Even with the stimulus money, Richland One was already facing a $13 million shortfall over last year. Without it, that shortfall grows to $17 million. $4 million may not sound like that much, but the hardest cuts come in the classroom.

"Anywhere from 80 to 100 teachers. When you break it down, it's a major hit for any school district," said Dr. Mack.

That's why Dr. Mack sent a memo to all Richland One employees asking them to contact the governor. He hopes an appeal to Sanford will help avoid more cuts to an already lean budget.

"We're trying to maintain our staffing and really work with not having further reductions than we've had to make, and will continue to have to make. It has to come to an end," said Dr. Mack.

The memo also outlines what the district may face if their share of the stabilization dollars don't come through.

"We will have to have more reductions in staff and services for our students here, and that will result in not a good situation," said Dr. Mack.

But as for just exactly how bad the situation will be, Dr. Mack says he'll have to wait until the state passes a budget. As of right now, the governor has not given any indication that he will change his mind.

Reported by Drew Stewart

Posted by Jeremy Turnage