When Ruth O'Dell took over as Franklin County School District superintendent three years ago, she knew she'd be dealing with an ever-decreasing budget.
However, as the recession continued on, tough calls had to be made.
"It got so bad this year that we had to go down and actually eliminate positions. And that was the hardest thing, you know, that I've ever done."
NPR reported on the cuts and compromises made in Franklin to keep its financially floundering public school system funded.
By re-imagining the school calendar with longer school days and shorter school years, the district will save $300,000 a year. But at what cost to the children themselves?
Cindy Roach worries about her fourth-grade daughter's health, commenting that she seems more tired at the end of long school days.
"Many times...they get on the bus sometimes even at 6:30 in the morning. And then, some of them maybe don't even get home until close to 5 o'clock."