Affects to county schools
Today, Madison County Schools could absorb Model’s 316 elementary, 175 middle and 220 high school students if Model were to close its doors, said Dr. Kevin Hub, the district’s assistant superintendent for human resources.
When the county looked at redistricting in February, Hub calculated that Richmond’s elementary schools have the capacity for 400 more students.
He said the most difficult part would be finding a place for Model’s teachers, who would be required to go through the same hiring process as new applicants if they were to seek a position with the county district.
Having been a resident of this area for 20 years, Hub said, “the fact that it has been around for 100 years, losing Model would be a big issue.”
However, if Model's students found themselves at county schools, “the children will be educated,” Hub said.
People may debate whether there is a big difference between attending Model Elementary and, for example, Kit Carson Elementary, Hub said. But “obviously we’re going to say: ‘No problem parents. The education we provide your children is going to be awesome.’”
Efforts to reduce Model’s budget
Dantic said he couldn’t speculate as to whether EKU would cut funding to Model as “all things are on the table.”
But, “I understand. If the money is not there, you have to cut it,” he said. “We’ll have to look at ways to decrease the university’s ($1.2 million) commitment to us.”
However, parts of Model’s budget has already seen cuts over the years.
Dantic took over as director in 2001. In 2004, the school’s maintenance and operations budget was $430,000, he said.
This fund covers school supplies, professional development fees, insurance, $24,000 in need-based scholarship money and “anything else it takes to run a school,” Dantic said.
Today, that budget item is $178,804, less than half the 2004 amount.
Other Model expenditures include about $4.8 million in personnel; $139,000 for technology; $80,000 for textbooks; and $90,000 for special education.
Dantic said Model’s mission is “interwoven with strands of pre-K through 12th-grade public education as well as those of undergraduate public education.”
“Similar to the dynamic nature of Model’s instructional mission, its financial support is equally multifaceted in addressing student need,” he said.
It is understandable how some might consider Model to be a private school because of the tuition requirement, he said. But, “that is a rather narrow interpretation when one considers the very public responsibility of the school in providing instruction to both pre-K through 12th-grade pupils as well as state university students.”