If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a community to raise a school.  
Dickson superintendent Jeff Colclasure, who started the position on July 1, said that Dickson, like every school in the state, has seen the effects of state wide budget cuts. The state’s education budget saw severe cuts after a historic shortfall in the state general revenue in December, which led to deep cuts into education. Colclasure said he was welcomed into the position with a good situation, due to previous superintendent Larry Case’s handling the budget woes well.
“Overall, Mr. Case has done a really good job with the budget. I’m really fortunate to have followed him and I think he’s done a really good job with it,” he said. “But we’re like everybody else, it doesn’t matter what district you’re in, you’re going to feel the sting of budget cuts and I think it’s a continuous challenge to carry out your goals and to keep moving forward when your money is being cut. I think that’s the big problem.”
Many schools across the state have had to get creative in their spending to find ways to reduce spending while still maintaining quality. Schools and districts have had to evaluate their situation and make cuts to various parts of the budget, depending on the situation and outlook. Colclasure said that while Dickson Public Schools have had to make adjustments like every other district, it helps to have supporting staff that understand the complexities of budget cuts.
“It’s something that we’re continuously working out. The nice thing about working with professionals is that they understand the problems that we have, as far as money in the state, and everybody has pitched in and helped and that’s been a really good thing,” Colclasure said. “But you can’t continue to have these types of budget cuts and not eventually impact the service that we provide.”
Colclasure said the ultimate goal is to ensure that students get a quality education and that their educational experience isn’t hampered or reduced by budget woes. Teachers and students are the priority for the district and ensuring they have the resources needed for an educational environment. Colclasure, who has previous experience as an educator, administrator and working for the state, said he has had experience with budget cuts in the past and that communication with other administrators is important in overcoming the cuts.  
“When I was an administrator, I have been through three rounds of budget cuts. I think that the biggest thing I picked up is, I got to meet some really great people and some really quality administrators and you know we’re fortunate that we’ll share our ideas with each other and we’ll help each other provide guidance,” Colclasure said.
Colclasure said area schools are unique in its ability to work together and communicate on issues. While in some areas, districts don’t communicate well, Colclasure said area schools and administrators make a point to draw ideas from one another and discuss the current situations.
“There is a community and it’s a really strong community. We’re all in the same boat, so we all work together pretty closely and I think that that’s really important,” he said.  “That’s not the same case everywhere. I’ve talked to a couple of the administrators in the area and one of the first things they talked about is how closely the schools work together and that’s a pretty special thing.
“We help each other out in any way that we can and i think that’s really important.”
In the wake of budget cuts, the passing of bonds should help with upgrades and improvements that the school normally wouldn’t be able to accomplish. In April, Dickson Public Schools passed a $6.2 million bond that will allow the school to upgrade facilities. With the bond, the school will improve security on campus, add a new classroom addition to the elementary, build a science lab for the high school and improve the athletic facilities. The football field will be moved farther east as part of the bond, which will allow for a new eight lane all-weather track. The current track runs under the bleachers. The improvements will create a more traditional track and field facility.
Colclasure said the school is set to begin construction in October.
“We’re going to move on it pretty quickly and I”m really excited about that upgrading and buildings are always nice and it’s nice when you have the generosity of the patrons and they support the district enough to vote those things in.”
Colclasure said the bonds not only help the school fund improvement projects, but demonstrate the communities support and willingness to ensure students are getting the best educational experience possible.
“It is really beneficial because it allows us to upgrade some things that really need upgraded and to provide a better service for our kids,” he said. “I think it just shows the level of support that this community has for its students.”