CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Kanawha County School Board announced at its Thursday night meeting it will layoff 25 employees at the end of the current school year.

The layoffs, due to declining enrollment, include four employees at the Garnet Career Center, and 21 teacher aid positions in the school system.

“This is more related to the state school formula, where they provide so much funding per student in a county,” said Board President Robin Rector. “When we have declining enrollment, that means we’re going to get less (state funding), and invariably that means a budget hit for us.”

Rector said making layoffs is something the board never looks forward to having to do.

“Absolutely not something we like to do. The system’s invested time, money, orientation and training of those employees,” she said. “In many times they’ve become part of the family at the schools they work with. They’re very invested in the students and the teachers are invested in the school. It’s just something you hate to do.”

Rector explained that the decision had to made before enrollment numbers are in for pre-K and kindergarten, so there was the possibility that some of the laid off employees could come back if numbers improved.

“You never know what’s going to happen over the summer months. If for some reason we would have more students come in or we have more students enroll in kindergarten and pre-K in February and April, it can make a difference in some of our numbers.”

Declining enrollment has led to many layoffs of school positions in 2016 so far throughout southern West Virginia.