Your Letter: Does more funding equal better education?
Hello it's me again, with even more silly questions. I was watching debates and discussion about our state budget during the last week or so and I noticed a pattern. Several politicians and community members claim that education spending cuts wil...
Hello it's me again, with even more silly questions.
I was watching debates and discussion about our state budget during the last week or so and I noticed a pattern. Several politicians and community members claim that education spending cuts will harm our children. Isn't quality of education more important than the cost of education? At my place of work I see an interesting phenomena. Within an hour or so after school every day I observe at least four different school buses from at least four different schools going through the same intersection. When I mention this to people I hear similar stories. I also know of twice daily trips by more than one school to pick up and deliver students individually by school car and school driver.
Open enrollment is fine, open cost to the taxpayer to cover open enrollment is not. I am certainly not a financial genius, however I cannot help but think something could be improved in this busing system without "harming" a single child in any way. We could also talk about highly paid principals, superintendents and administrators and why any school needs all of these and why they need to be paid so much. (I am not singling out anyone in particular, just the system as a whole.)
In some cases I am sure that information I do not have would affect my opinion on some matters, but I am absolutely positive that accountability must come before we start throwing more money into the "system." I know of few employers (except governments and banks, and we all know what happens there!) who will give an employee or department a raise for doing a poor job. I see and hear reports from schools that perform very well on standards tests, graduation, job or college placement etc. that spend considerably less than their counterparts. And of course their counterparts claim they need more money to do the same job. Although higher costs in certain areas make this somewhat true, there are problems with this claim. For example: If general expenses in town "A" are 20 percent higher than expenses in town "B," why does the school in town A need 40-60 percent more money (per student) to do same job as the school in town B? And with the higher amount of money spent per student in town A why do their students perform consistently lower than those in town B?
And why do so many of our politicians want to keep pouring more money into the education system when the results do not correspond with the increase in spending? And how many apples does Johnny have left after he gets off the bus in Chicago at 3 o'clock? (Math humor, ha, ha.)
Does anyone remember the big news stories from years back (They started with "60 Minutes" or "20/20," I'm not sure) about the wasteful spending of the military? (The $500 hammer, the $600 toilet seat, etc.) Why haven't I seen similar news stories about our education system? (Oops, was that another silly question?)