Loudoun County may be forced to shut down four small schools in an effort to fill a $38 million budget gap.
Hundreds of parents and their children gathered at a Loudoun County School Board community meeting Monday -- 181 people spoke out, pleading with officials to keep schools open.
"Instead of closing these schools you should hold them up as an example of what should be," one parent said, holding back tears.
Schools on the chopping block are Lincoln, Aldie, Hamilton and Hillsboro elementary schools. Shutting them down will save the county $2 million, officials said.
"This board is taking this action in a fit because you didn't get what you wanted from the Board of Supervisors, and you're telling our children what you do when you're angry is to hurt other people. Get ready for the political fight of your lives because this will follow you for the rest of your careers," one parent said.
Second grader Graham Balderson -- up way past his bedtime -- chimed in as well.
"I like my school, please don't shut it down," he said.
Any final decisions will be made within the next few weeks.