The Examiner

Bedford Schools Look to Preserve Modified, Freshman Sports

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As the Bedford School District faces a $3.3 million budget deficit, school officials may be able to avoid drastically reducing freshman and modified sports next year.

Assistant Superintendent for Business and Administrative Services Cynthia Hawthorne said last week that a proposed reduction of nearly $42,000 in athletic stipends would have significantly cut back the athletic opportunities for students in grades 7-9.

However, she said that Athletic Director Adam Lodewick suggested the Board of Education tell him how much to reduce the department’s budget, and he and his department would make the decision what to cut based on the interest level demonstrated by students.

“So it’s not necessarily cutting any one level of sports, for instance freshman sports versus modified sports, but based on enrollment, based on what the students wanted and signed up for, we would make the determination and he would make the reduction as the year goes on,” Hawthorne said.

There’s a possibility that fall sports could be called off depending on what is happening with the coronavirus, she said. If that occurred, there could be enough money for most or all winter and spring sports, if athletic competition returned later next school year.

Interim Superintendent of Schools Dr. Joel Adelberg and members of the board said it was a strong recommendation by Lodewick, which would preserve the most popular programs instead of cutting across the board.

“We’re trying to save these experiences for kids. He’s trying to find other efficiencies,” Adelberg said.

Other possibilities would be to eliminate some assistant coaches or to consider a merged team in some sports with another school district.

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