We have lost our minds...

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by everywoman, May 6, 2009.

  1. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    in this country.

    This is from an article in my local paper...

    Twenty-five school employees will be out of a job if the district’s finances don’t improve before July 1.
    That’s the word Tuesday from District Superintendent XXXXXX who said if contracts were handed out today, 10 classified personnel and about 15 teachers would be let go.
    But, contracts are not being handed out until later this month, so it is possible the figure could change, he said.
    A special board meeting will be held next week for XXXXX to give an update on the budget status.
    The numbers have been crunched many times during the past few months.
    The latest information shows the district currently has a $1.5 million budget shortfall and is looking at a deficit of $1 million for next year, XXXXX said

    and in the same article.....

    Paid to go to summer school

    One thing the stimulus money will be used for is to pay for summer school classes for middle school students.
    And this year, the students who fail during the regular school year will be paid to attend summer school.
    XXXX said there is a stipulation some of the stimulus funds be used to pay students $6 per hour to attend summer school.
    “Are you saying if a student fails we are going to pay them to go summer school?” board member XXXXXX asked.
    “We are not going to pay them anything but the federal government is,” XXXXXX responded.
    “And for the students who made straight A’s, they will have a great summer and we will see them next year,” added Dr. XXXXXX.
    Board Chairman XXXXX said “philosophically” he does not agree with the payment.
    “But I am not going to turn down opportunities for our kids,” he said.
    The reasoning behind the payments, it was explained, is because the students attending summer school cannot get summer jobs. This is a way to entice them to put education first.

    I can't believe that as a country we have gotten so far off course. Surely, we have lost our minds. I guess this started when we gave bonuses to CEO's who lost all the stock money for investors and left them penniless. Now, we're going to pay kids for failing??????

    I need some chocolate, NOW!
  2. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    I saw this - (passes a bag of kisses)

    And yet THESE are the people we have EDUCATING our children? No WONDER S.C. is so behind.

    UNREAL -
  3. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    Unfortunately, these are the people making policies for our children. They have nothing to do with educating them. Teachers are trying---policies like this one are killing us.
  4. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Yes, a lot of people in this country have lost their minds. I see no logic in so many things I see happening. I hope that with that news being made public, people rally enough and make enough noise to get this plan changed before it is implemented.
  5. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    It's not just in SC - a town close to here had the emergency school levy (on property taxes) defeated by 1.5% of those voting. They've already had to close an elementary and lay off janitors. The people in this town who argued against the levy keep saying it's unfair that those who have more expensive homes should have to pay more. I think their expensive homes are going to get looted by the uneducated masses.

    I graduated from that school district and my parents still live there. They were very active in trying to get the levy passed. Someone paid for me to attend school - they see it that way. Plus, someone is paying for my kids to attend their school... So it's reciprocal in a way. Pay it forward.

    Others who argue don't think parents should get off free. These are apparently people with no children. Between school fees, activity fees, supplies for the teachers and classrooms, fundraisers, etc. etc. etc., I think we spent close to $1K last school year. It's not free to parents.
  6. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    'round here we have to pay to send our kids to summer school.

    This madness of cutting school budgets and laying off good teachers is going on across the country. They are taking away decent education from our children. The only schools making money anymore are the private universities with annual endowments and bequeaths.

    The other day H and I passed one of the very wealthy local prep schools where there is yet further construction going on. This school is located less than 10 miles outside the Hartford city limits - a city where there is not nearly enough funding, public or private for anything new, such as computers or even books, let alone better teachers. It turns out an alumni of the prep school donated enough $$ to build this new 'wing' at the middle school level. Last month there was a HUGE article about an alumni of a private college in West Hartford who bequeathed MILLIONS to the college upon her death. WTH? How about spreading some of that wealth to the areas that truly need it? I've always scratched my head in wonder about this stuff. Doesn't make sense.

    I suppose from a town board member's mind, it's difficult to choose where the cuts will be, but I don't think education cuts should even be on the same table as recreational or town garage funding. Eh?
  7. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    This just makes no sense, whatsoever.
  8. daralex

    daralex Clinging onto my sanity

    If there going to go that far I say all mothers should get paid $6 an hour for putting up with thier kids going to summer school!
  9. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    How about we pay parents to be professional parents? Stay-at-homes could get something tangible out of it!
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    The sense in this country is rapidly bottoming out. This is further proof. ugh

    The reasoning behind it is ridiculous. A student taking summer school usually takes only the class they failed, not a whole schedule. And I'm sorry, but if you were so lazy to fail every class during the school year.....you don't deserve a second chance with summer school. sheesh

    Our school district is so far in the hole financially they'll never see the light of day again. Due to inproper spending of budget monies........they have trouble finding teachers worth a darn to teach. So students are leaving the sd in droves. So? What do they do?? They build all new schools from grade school thru high school! Huge! And also due to money mis management.......schools should've been done 3-4 yrs ago......and are still being built.

    Only reason it will be done by the new fall 09 deadline is the state stepped in and are now watching their every move. If it isn't finished.....state will shut down the district while auditing the budget. A total mess.
  11. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member


    This just seems to feed into "entitlement syndrome".

    Why should the kids work hard at regular classes, if they can get paid to go to summer school? And why should the good students work hard, when they can fail too and get paid to go to summer school? And why go to school at all, unless someone's paying me to go? And it all just spirals downhill from there...

    Jo, your question is an interesting one...
    The high school I used to go to has a huge alumni fundraising machine, and as a result is very well equipped. Meanwhile, lots of the local public schools are falling to wrack and ruin. The way the regulations work around here, it's very difficult to donate large sums to the public school system. And if such donations get through the red tape, there's no guarantee that the funds will actually be used for the intended purposes (textbooks, playground equipment or whatever). In some cases, such donations have been funnelled into school trustee slush funds, which have then been spent on "research trips" to the carribbean and the like.

    I'm not sure how things work in your area with regard to regulations about donations to publich schools, but sometimes the system just makes it too hard. I know that if I had a few spare millions lying around to donate to schools, I'd be sorely tempted to open my own private school rather than throwing the money into the pit with the rest of the mismanaged public funding...

    Last edited: May 6, 2009
  12. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Trinity, I know of a few cases locally where some family has donated fund specifically for computers, for instance, or new books - but those have been through specific fundraising for those items only. I think you're correct, the red tape would be horrendous to go through. Since our public schools are both locally and state funded institutions, there is probably some regulatory board that the funds would have to go through and be allocated through (I am wondering if a donator to a public school is specific about WHICH district it would like the funds to go to, if the board can funnel the money to another district). I am going to see if I can find out any information on this.
  13. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    I should get my rather outspoken father in law on this thread. He is a former superintendant that fought things like this left and right. He'd probably go off his rocker.

    Trinity has it right. Why work during the regular school year when you know you can get paid in the summer. Stupid.

  14. muttmeister

    muttmeister Well-Known Member

    I'm definitely glad that I retired from teaching when I did. Things are going from bad to worse every day. Our schools and their funding definitely need a major overhaul but, so far, I haven't heard any proposals that make sense.

    One of my pet peeves has always been the people who don't have kids and then complain that they shouldn't have to pay for schools. I hope that when they get old and need care the only people they can hire are those who got cheated out of an education because those ninnies didn't want to pay for it. How can people be so stupid that they can't see that educating our kids is not just something we do for our kids: it's also something we do for our selves and for our country. I'm beginning to be of the opininion that you should have to pass some kind of a citizenship test to vote. OK, not really because I can see that that would cause even more problems but I really think we are beating our heads against the wall here.
    Last edited: May 6, 2009
  15. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    It takes a village to raise a child.
    My mom complains about school tax. She raised 5 children. 3 went to public schools!!! She got hers and the others should fend for themselves? I blame it on her strokes.:bag:
    I told her even wolves as a pack help raise each others children. Surely humans can understand this.
    I don't have any suggestions on how to get unmotivated students motivated. Do any of you? Surely paying them is the worst possible way but how does one light a fire under their behinds?
  16. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    I really don't want to live in a community where neighbors would allow the community's children to be inadequately educated. I paid taxes before Duckie started school and I'll pay them long after she graduates hs.
  17. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    See Gcvmom's thread on the News forum about narcissism in our culture.

    Just feeding into it more.

    I'm on the flip side of the school levy. Our school passes a levy every year. Once they passed two in one year. Property taxes have skyrocketed. Mine went up $1,000 in one year. Plus the school fees I have to pay at the beginning of the school year, plus the books we have to buy for class, and on and on.

    They just passed another yesterday. While I don't begrudge the schools the money they need, we're in an economic crisis. I'm no longer a homeowner and do not pay property taxes directly, however, it will be reflected in my rent.

    And when the one pamphlet being passed out in support of the levy was talking about having to cut field trips (as the biggest issue), I kept thinking of my daughter's field trip to the apple orchard and thinking that it was ok to cut it.

    Yet the bond issue they passed several years ago to build a new school...the school still hasn't been built. And it's desperately needed. I'm not sure how bond issues work, though.

    And then, because I'm the mother of a sped student, I think about the levies being passed every year and how hard I had to fight for the minimal services my daughter got.
  18. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Heather - you MUST live near me. I recognize the SD and the "field trip" bit.

    Out city passed our levy last November. Our property taxes went up about $200 a year. Still not enough, but we need new schools - ours are bursting at the seams - and the ones we have need updates. difficult child 2 has to go outside to go to the bathroom. No big right now, but when it's 10 degrees...
  19. everywoman

    everywoman Active Member

    I read the article last night, and had been contemplating. Then this. I actually used the article as a reference in a conversation about this topic this morning. I understand that some kids struggle---my problem is that as a teacher, I am not allowed to give a student less than a 62 for the quarter. The problem with that is that kids have figured out how to work the program to their advantage. They do no work---I have kids with 4's and 10's for an average---and they still get a 62. Then the kids who really struggle to get a 70 have to work to pass---and little johnny skates by for 2 quarters and then manages to sail through.
  20. SRL

    SRL Active Member

    About 5 years ago our district had to slash $4million from it's budget, followed by $2.4 million the next year. Huge staff cuts were made at every level from custodial to administration, class sizes were increased, programs were cut. Many of the cuts were never restored.

    The district had no choice but to take drastic measures. We're a rapidly growing district so new schools are needed every few years, they need to be staffed and outfitted, and the state is really inconsistent in funding education.