Northern Michigan Districts Struggle With Funding and Enrollment

Districts across northern Michigan are feeling the effects of declining enrollment.

Most superintendents in the area have seen a drop and say it makes educating students more difficult.

At Manton Consolidated Schools enrollment has decreased by about 200 students in the past six years. The superintendent says declining birthrates and unemployment are primarily responsible for the lower numbers.

Districts across the area have had to cut back on staff and consolidate buildings. Recent state cuts combined with lower student counts adds up quickly, especially for small districts. Schools receive around 7,000 dollars in funding per student each year.

Traverse City Area Public Schools is the only district we spoke with that has maintained student enrollment numbers. However, the district has also made cuts because of decreases in funding from the state.

9 and 10's Kyle Mitchell and Photojournalist Jeff Blevins have more on the impact of declining enrollment.