BELVIDERE - The Belvidere School Board cuts are supposed to save the district more than 2-million dollars in the coming year, but that also means 18 teachers are being dismissed.
This after the board voted on 17 separate cuts at a meeting last night.
Among them, the closure of
Parents whose children go to Kishwaukee Elementary are already feeling the pain, and so are the 18 teachers who are losing their jobs at the end of the year.
"A big shift is taken place," said Belvidere Education Association president Mark Luthin.
The closure of
"These are friends, they're part of our family," said Luthin, or families who call Kishwaukee home.
"I mean, we were devastated," said Kishwaukee PTO president and parent Holly Houk.
Some were left heart-broken after school board members closed Kishwaukee Elementary.
"I was up until midnight with my kids, trying to console them," said Houk. "I mean really, they were crying that long."
Luthin says 18 certified teachers are getting
"And this is a big shake up in that family, and that's tough," said Luthin.
While elementary kids know where they'll go to school, the administration is working out how the boundary lines will work for middle and high school kids in the Kishwaukee zone.
"It's going to affected this entire district, and every student," said Houk.
Superintendent Michael Houselog says they typically try to keep kids together as they feed through the system, but that doesn't always work out.
"It's not healthy for schools to be closing, it's not healthy for us to be reducing staff," said Houselog.
"I think the state has really bailed on education," said Luthin.
And while the administration, teachers union, and even some concerned parents have reached to local legislators with their concerns, "There's really not much response from the state level," said Houk.
And what response there is doesn't paint a hopeful picture.
"Both sides of the aisle both think that they're fighting an uphill battle," said Houselog. "Yeah, I don't know how that works."