Proposed town council budget in Groton closes school, sheds doze - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Proposed town council budget in Groton closes school, sheds dozens of jobs

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Pleasant Valley Elementary School in Groton would close under a proposed budget. (WFSB photo) Pleasant Valley Elementary School in Groton would close under a proposed budget. (WFSB photo)
GROTON, CT (WFSB) -

The town council in Groton said it recently found more money for its school district.

However, a proposed budget still aims to trim $3 million from it.

A meeting on the subject was held on Monday night.

Pleasant Valley Elementary School would close and dozens of staff would be laid off. Parents said the impact wouldn't stop there.

"Education is an investment not just to the kids but the town itself," said Frances Whitney, a parent.

Whitney was one of many parents who addressed the meeting. She said she's alarmed by the massive proposed education cuts.

Her 6-year-old daughter Charlotte spoke up too.

Charlotte attends Northeast Academy, a place which she loves.

"Because you get to learn and you get to make new friends," she told Eyewitness News.

Charlotte struggled a bit with reading until she enrolled in a program called Lexia.

The proposed cuts may scrap that service.

Superintendent Michael Graner agreed with the Whitneys.

"A $3 million dollar cut to any budget is devastating," he said. 

Graner said along with technology cuts, the district would have to close Pleasant Valley and lay off more than 30 teachers, paraprofessionals and administrators.

However, town leaders said they're in a difficult spot. With less money coming from the state, making the numbers work is a challenge.

Charlotte said she just hopes they figure it out so kids like her can get the help they need.

"It's cutting the education to our schools and it's cutting my education to learn," she said.

Families and the superintendent hoped to sway town leaders to increase spending during Monday night's meeting.

No decisions have been made.

Board members hope the state can find more money for the town than was originally expected.

Exactly what will be impacted by the cuts should be known by July.

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