SRHD decision shrinks Spokane Guilds' School funding

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by SHAWN CHITNIS & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on June 20, 2013 at 7:19 PM

Updated Friday, Jun 21 at 11:10 AM

SPOKANE, Wash.--The Spokane Regional Health District decided Thursday to stop some of its funding for the Spokane Guilds’ School. SRHD leaders decided to spread out the funding between additional children with special needs.

The Guilds’ School normally gets almost $200,000 a year, but now they will share the funding with other clinics.

SRHD board members said the demand for the special needs community keeps going up but the money to support them is not enough. Workers at other clinics said they are excited about the change. However the vote left Guilds’ School leaders upset.

“We're very disappointed and so disappointed we don't want say anything more than that we're disappointed," said Spokane Guilds' School Exec. Director Dick Boysen.

The Spokane Guilds’ School works with about 130 of the 500 special needs families in the Spokane area. Federal funding for staff work at places like the school is around $580,000.

SRHD board members said it’s time to spread the money more evenly.

“How do we spread those limited funds so that all 500 families have equal access to those resources," asked SRHD board member Todd Mielke.

Meanwhile Spokane Guilds’ School leaders argued that they should receive a larger portion of the funding because they help the largest group of kids at one location.

Yet, people who work for other special needs providers say they have kids who need as much attention as those who go to the Guilds' School.

“I think it will help the community in regards to making sure that all the children in the community get the services they need instead of things being concentrated at one facility," said David Owan who owns Youthful Horizons Therapy Clinic.

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