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Published April 18, 2013, 06:57 PM

Federal funding cuts claim Cavalier, Langdon Head Start programs

School districts in northeast North Dakota say goodbye to a helpful learning program. Cuts in federal funding means taking the ax to Head Start programs in Cavalier and Langdon.

By: David Schwab, WDAZ

School districts in northeast North Dakota say goodbye to a helpful learning program. Cuts in federal funding means taking the ax to Head Start programs in Cavalier and Langdon.

The Director of the local Head Start Program Jerry Jonnson says it's a bad situation, but there was no way around it. As you might expect some residents in Cavalier and Langdon are upset they are losing these programs, which likely will not come back.

It's lunch time at the Head Start Program in Grand Forks. A meal that went into the decision when making cuts in the program in two other towns. Dr. Jerry Jonnson says he was forced to cut more than 120,000 dollars to the region's program. He had to identify the kids that would be least impacted and that was in Cavalier and Langdon.

Jonnson: "If I were to cut any other place I would be taking about 256 meals from a child more than other areas that have not been cut.

Jonnson says there are a total of 24 kids that attend head start twice a week in Cavalier and Langdon combined compared to more than 300 in Grand Forks, the Air Force Base and Grafton, and those kids attend four days a week. Cavalier County Commissioner Elsie Magnus says the state should step in to help keep the programs.

Magnus: " How do we get something like this back once it is closed down. The people that work into are gone and that is an economic issue for them as well. Where do we go with that, where do we go for help?"

Education experts say even school twice a week can have an impact on pre-schoolers and those with special needs.

Terry Arason, Education Coordinator: "It certainly is a loss, so it is impacting that population up there".

Every Head Start Program in the US having to make more than five percent in funding cuts.

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