Saturday, February 10, 2007

Lakeville School District cuts $7.2 Million in Funding

How does this affect our children?

I recently read an article in the Pioneer Press that Lakeville schools and students are about to suffer losses due to lack of funds. Not surprisingly, the expected consequences will be increased classroom size, more kids will walk to school, and teachers will be let go.

Lakeville school district administrators say they saw it coming. Well of course you would if local voters rejected all three levy ballots that were on the November election ticket. Homeowners have apparently had enough of the constant increase in their taxes and are letting their elected officials know it. The response set forth from the school district appears to me to be a fear tactic. Judy Keliher, a school board chairman says "it's going to make it tough to deliver education next year...we'll do the best we can. We value every program and person we have in this district". Funny thing is, if they value everyone so much, why are they cutting 21.7 full-time elementary positions and 10.7 positions at the two high schools. I haven't read anywhere that they are cutting any superintendent or district administrators jobs. Those should be the first sized down before any teachers are laid off or student programs are cut. But of course that won't happen. Instead they comment that the students will suffer and leave the impression that it is the taxpayers fault.

Maybe they should concentrate on running the school system more effectively. One thing I am glad to see is that they are not offering school buses to those that live within a 2 mile radius of the school. Kids now must either walk or get a ride. Wow, that's a novel idea. Where I grew up in Indiana, this was the norm, even in winter. Maybe it will help our kids get a little more exercise!

Look to see the district asking for more money again on the next ballot. The Lakeville school board will vote on the 2007-08 budget and boundary proposals at its next meeting, Tuesday, 7pm at 8670 210th St. W.

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