Nye County school closures considered by School Board

Republican Govenor Brian Sandoval of Nevada

Republican Govenor Brian Sandoval of Nevada

Fely Quitevis, Chair of the Nye County Republican Party Central Committee informed the Pahrump Valley Times the event is only open to “anyone” who wants to donate $50 and is a registered Republican. She sees the picnic as a “celebration of Sandoval’s victory in the November elections, not a time to pose difficult questions to the governor.”

“Sandoval has pledged not to increase taxes amid a major budget shortfall,” reported the PVT.

While Quitevis celebrates Sandoval’s victory and doesn’t feel it time to pose difficult questions to him, The Nye County School District Board would probably like to ask Sandoval how can they save Nye County’s education system to comply with his budget.

I would bet many school kids and parents in Nye County would like to ask him some questions too while the Nye County Republican Central Committee celebrates Sandoval’s election.

At the trustee’s Nye County School District’s Board (NCSD) meeting on May 3, three more scenarios were presented by Ray Ritchie, chief administrative and financial officer, to solve the district’s budget crisis.

Consideration of closure of schools in Pahrump, Gabbs and Tonopah was presented as a way to save teacher positions in view of a $5.8 million budget loss for the school district this coming school year.

The $5.8 million shortage for the budget was attributed to a decrease in the number of students in the school district and a decrease in the assessed valuation for the county resulting in lower property tax revenues. Additionally, Republican Governor Brian Sandoval seeks to cut education spending back to levels existent before 2007. That reduces the budget by nine percent.

Trustee Edna Forsgren addressed the board, about closing the school in Gabbs, saying, “I think we find that the schools are the heart of the community and a lot of times, when we take the schools away, we gut the community.”

Board President Harold Tokerud seemed to concur with Forsgren. “I thought about the culture of schools and the culture of a small town. You take out the school, you kill the town. There’s no doubt about it. It’s a tremendous responsibility we have to try and get this budget together.”

Ritchie said Governor Sandoval was not backing down from his proposals.

Pathways (Alternative) High School in Pahrump, the school in Gabbs and Tonopah Elementary/Middle School attending Tonopah High School is contemplated for savings. Gabbs School currently has 60 students and seven teachers for all grades. Closing Gabbs School would amount to savings of $248,950, according to Ritchie.

Pathways has 170 students and four teachers. The state pays the school $1,023,230.

The proposal of closing Tonopah Elementary and Middle School and combining the students at Tonopah High School was discussed and rejected. Ritchie informed the board that the move would require the addition of five modular classrooms to handle the increase of students attending.

While families of Nye County are struggling to survive and educate their children Governor Sandoval holds to his campaign promise not to increase taxes, just cut state support of schools. I wonder how happy Nye County Republicans and their families are (the ones that can’t afford $50 to attend the picnic or pay for private schooling) now about having elected Sandoval Governor? Wonder if they’d do it again?

Sources: Pahrump Mirror and Pahrump Valley Times

Related posts:

  1. Two Nye County School Board Trustees Resign
  2. Brian Sandoval Proposes Laying Off 72 Nye County Teachers
  3. Nevada’s School Dropout Rate Worst in Nation
  4. Nevada ranks last in high school graduation rates
  5. Will Gibbons accept $162 million for Nevada’s school teachers and Medicaid?

About Featheriver

Born and raised in Oklahoma. Improved in California. Out to pasture in Nevada. Born in 1933, Korean War Vet in USAF. Occupation: Criminal Law and Torts. Retired California Lawyer. Now live in Pahrump, Nye County, Nevada.
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