WELCH, W.Va. — McDowell County schools will be forced to cut 30 positions at the end of the school year, according to Superintendent Nelson Spencer.

Spencer said that the school district is dealing with a 1.5 million dollar cut in state and local funding, and will eliminate 15 professional positions and 15 service positions.

Affected employees were notified on Thursday and Friday of last week. The cuts will go into effect at the end of the current school year.

McDowell County Schools has lost 400 students in the past 5 years. Spencer said between 20 and 30 positions were eliminated last year alone.