"I live in ca. My daughter is in a great public school. Why? Because the
parents and teachers work together to make sure the kids are getting the
best possible education. The parents are involved and it shows. I don't
think tea hers are over paid. They are responsible for our children's
future. They should be paid well. Yes things need improvement ... But
don't complain get involved and make it better. It is amazing how much a
small group of parents can make a difference ... Imagine what would happen
if a large number of parents got involved ? We do need more tax dollas to
go to education .... You can say that ca has high taxes but if you
incorporate you pay almost nothing in taxes here. I know many people who
have done this ... Individuals who are hiding behind false corps need to
be accountable and pay for their use of the commons like everyone else.
"For the person that wrote about charter schools having a higher education
at a lower price, the money for those charter schools come from the school
districts the students live in. These districts are paying the charter
schools for those students attendance. Yes there are many Charter Schools
that do a great job with students, however that is a main reason why
school districts are losing money."
"Parents need to look around and understand the reason for budget cuts. In
many districts, 85% of the school budget goes to salaries and benefits for
teachers and administrators. This is money that does nothing to enhance
their children's education. Parents should be angry that teachers and
administrators refuse to take smaller raises or pay more for their health
care. In times of an economic downturn, teachers would rather see job
cuts, than take smaller raises or increase the amount they pay for health
care. Why should taxpayers shoulder this expensive burden while they see
the quality of education deteriorating? Something is wrong with this
picture. A note to parents: More money will never improve the quality of
education. How can charters and parochial schools continue to offer higher
quality education at a much lower price?"
"Some great ideas. I hope the parents are successful. Something has to be
done to preserve quality education in the public schools."
"I'm not sure if this has really caught on yet but I believe schools will
be doing less, more focused fundraising efforts in the near future. After
all, it's more important to get the complete support of students, parents
and the community on a major, highly-profitable fundraiser than it is to
get very little support on a lot of small ones."
"I'd like to know what other PTAs are doing to raise funds. I'm part of a
PTA for a public elementary school in Denver that has several fundraising
programs and events: Simply Giving (just donating), wine tasting/silent
auction, concerts, and Halloween carnivals. Like other PTAs, we have to
raise more and more every year. What do other PTAs do?"
"Watch carefully what happens in your state. In Washington (with no income tax), 25% of families put their children in private schools as they have the means to do so. The national average is 10%. This imbalance makes it difficult to right the ship and ever get enough support for public schools. It's a shame. Children are our future... and they will one day manage our retirement funds. Don't we want them well-educated for that?"
"Focus on getting the collective bargaining agreements by the Teachers Unions out of the school and see how much money will be saved. The majority of public schools have become corrupt bastions of liberal thought. Charter schools do a much better job with the public money they are given, because they run their schools like a business and they use their money to educate children...what a novel thought."
"God was taken out of our schools and out of our courts, I am a simple high school graduate, my husband and I provide the needs of our family and very seldom the wants, our son has Asperger Syndrome, which is an autism spectrum disorder, in our county, a few years back a $2 million dollar Board of Education was built, including a Superintentent private suite, heated door knobs, and a marble staircase. It was an eye opener for me, my thoughts were of the torn and shared textbooks, rationed printer paper, and downsizing of teachers and parapros. What a materialistic world we live in, how does a fancy Board of Education help in the overcrowded classrooms? I have no answer, I'm just a high school graduate, I haven't been to college, nor do I have a degree in anything, but you want to know what I know, I know heated door knobs doesn't educate our children. I know the fanciest BOA in the world is not going to provide supplies for our schools, I know that teachers will never teach c!
hildren on that marble staircase, all these materialistic things have done nothing for our children, nothing productive anyway,alot of debt yes, even my simple educated mind can figure that out. Common sense should be taught in college, because the window I'm looking through isn't making these decision makers look very educated to me.I don't look to far into the future, it scares me to much, if we don't reprioritize soon, not only will education fall apart, our children are the ones who will be left with sewing kits trying to stitch all back together! scary thought huh! Now let tell you how I feel about special education, I would have liked to be a fly on the wall when this no child left behind crap was thought up,classrooms should come standard with revolving doors, I am a substitute teacher and some of the special ed students are pulled out4 or 5 times aday. Not only do teachers have to teach but now they have to remember what these children did learn or didn't learn in !
their classrooms, keep up with what time they are pulled out a!
nd what time they come back,what they need to catch up on, and by the way teachers have to stop teaching to get these students settled and on task with the rest of the class again. I think the legislators who came up with this plan should walk a day in the teachers shoes, then they should a day in students shoes, and WHO ASKED THESE CHILDREN IF THEY WOULD LIKE TO BE SINGLED OUT IN THE REGULAR CLASSROOM BY REGULAR STUDENTS?! did they think that the others students would not notice that they have their own parapro to help them, or how about this, part of autism is over stimulation and under stimulation, can you guess what they feel being pulled all day and sitting in a classroom with 20 or so other children, are they over stimulated or under stimulated? From experience with my own child, he gets teased, and the regular ed students are disturbed by him because he makes noises and hums, these are things he can not control, these are his coping mechanisms, some act out, some get!
angry and frustrated, some shutdown, but did anyone ask our children where they would feel safe and comfortable, NO! legislators say they need the influence of the regular ed students, how can the regular ed students influence these children, when they themselves are frustrated because the teacher has to stop and redirect these students. Wouldn't our special ed children feel less stress in a smaller classroom with other children like them? I think they would feel more at ease and feel less stress to be like everybody else. I say bring back EIP CLASSROOMS!"
"GREAT article, thank you.
It's this kind of creativity and hopefulness that makes America great -- and what is needed at the moment (and probably even more in the years to come now that the stimulus bux are history.)"
"Our district's schools are among the top in the state, but only because of
the extreme contributions from parents in the form of financing and time.
Our foundation raises close to $2 million each year for 9 schools, in
addition to another $1 million+ through PTA fundraisers and 30,000
volunteer hours at each school. Without these contributions, our kids
would be like many others - without art, music, computers, qualified
physical education instructors, textbooks, library books, science
equipment, and even paper and pencils. This is not an exaggeration!
Administrators are not the problem (our district office is one of the
leanest), it's simply expensive to educate and nurture so many children.
Even with all of this, we are facing cuts to teachers and large class
sizes next year. Parents cannot continue to bridge the widening budget
gap year after year, and teachers cannot work for any less than they
already do. If we as citizens value an educated population for the future
of our nation (please say that we do!), we need to INVEST in public
schools. It's an investment that will pay dividends in unlimited ways.
Legislators and taxpayers need to make education a priority."
"Instead of lobbying for more and more money every year, parents should be
looking at budgets and asking why there is so much money wasted by
schools. Parents need to look at the whole picture and ask if all the
money spent is actually going to make education better for the children.
Parents need to ask why taxpayers continue to fund such generous benefits
for teachers. Early retirement, generous pensions, and unbelievable
health benefits are awarded to public sector employees, but never to the
private sector. Why? They are impossibly expensive and unable to be
sustained any longer. If parents want to continue the wasting of taxpayer
money, then they should do their own fundraising and leave the rest of the
taxpayers alone. "
"CA is a basket case. We tried the Cupertino strategy in our school; it
failed. Parents already feel (rightly) that they are paying high
property taxes (on newly purchased homes). Old geezers who live in
neighborhoods with good schools (and hence an increase in their home
values) don't want to pay any more -- so forget parcel taxes.
The problem out here in CA is that the school 'districts' are either too
small (1-4 schools) or too big (think LA). If there were more moderate
sized schools districts (Maryland has a good model) the system could be
managed better. As it stands, it's a complete mess. But there is no
mechanism to change things.
So, if you have ever thought of moving to CA with kids, forget about it.
Wait until you retire and buy a small condo; enjoy the weather."
"If the government spends less money on the prisoners and wars, our schools
will get more money and our children will be smarter, at least smart
enough not to do something dangerous like crimes and wars. "
"A public funded education system is hardly ever successful. Reason being
that such a system leads to many inefficiencies since parents are
indirectly funding such an initiative through state exchequer. What is
needed is a mixed education system where private schooling becomes more
affordable (either through Government providing some guidelines for the
private schools' fees or Government giving tax reliefs. Such arrangement
could make the education system more efficient since Schools will have to
get their own funds and they might adopt think of more innovative
education methods). It is interesting to observe that USA is a developed
and rich nation but its education system is always short of funds (has
anyone ever thought that there might be many inefficiencies in the system
"I live in Hawaii and here our schools are not affected by lay offs, our
Governor has Furloughed the Department of Education. Two Fridays a month
school is closed due to budget cuts. I live in the state with the shortest
school year in the nation, now it's even shorter. Instead if raising our
GE state tax and cutting unnessary spending our children are paying the
price. What's wrong here? Our children are the future of this nation they
should not have to suffer because irrational decisions made by our elected
officials. Did I mention the Governor in Hawaii has no children....can't
we get someone outside to look in and say this is not right? "
"Perhaps budget shortfalls are a good thing if 'parents take back funding'
by chipping in a moderate cost per child. While educating children
definitely provides a public good, parents should be at least somewhat
responsible for the costs as well. If they can't, they should consider
carefully their decision to have more children in the first place.
Otherwise, the best schools will only be those for the rich who can afford
to pay a full private school tuition."
"I'm amazed that people haven't looked at the cost of funding Special
Education. In recent years, there has been a rise of autistic children
entering our public school....and the law states that autistic children
are entitled to a personal aide to be with them in the classroom. It'a
about time this matter was discussed and looked into. School districts
are spending millions (and that is not an exageration) on providing
personal aides for autistic children. There are more fiscally sound ways
of education autistic children within their neighborhood schools, and it's
about time it was looked into instead allowing this law to drain our
"I would also recommend voting with your checkbook when it comes to the
support of local elected officials that support education. Let those that
make the cuts to education know that your campaign contributions support
candidates that make education a priority. It gets their attention. "
"If California were a country it would be about #7 in GDP, it's one of the
highest taxed states in the union and 50% of our tax dollars goes to
education. Maybe my math is bad but it would seem even in recession years
if public education were ran like business & not an extension of
government it would be successful.
"We (the people) already pay to have our children in public schools, paying
more money is not the answer. The public school system is not working and
throwing more money at it won't make it work. You are correct when you
state that parents need to take back their schools. We should be able to
keep that tax money and give it directly to the school we want our
children to go to, thus eliminating the need for over paid administrators."
"The solution is parent option- parent choice- vouchers. With or without
vouchers I have decided that Obama's intent is to indoctrinate our
children. I won't let that happen. I will home school."
"We have a very large district in Torrance California that will not let us
raise money for our school exclusively. They will spread the money out
over all 23,000 kids and 20+ schools, they also won't allow us to raise
money to help save our teachers. Other than programs for arts, etc. how
can we stop staff cuts at our elementary school of 700? Any thoughts or
help are appreciated..."
"To wait another generation for the current system to 'reform' itself is,
at best, wishful thinking. Hope is not a stragety. The future is
independent public schools. Parents must take back funding before they
will get back their schools. The old system must become a 'public option'
in a unser-payer system of choice.
Here in Alexandria, Virginia, we are creating a parent supported public
"Why cut teachers or teacher salaries? The Board & the NJEA should be looking
to the Superintendent's salaries and the bloated administrative staff. The
Governor is not cutting jobs; he is saying enough is enough. In the past, it
has always been, if we have the budget we must spend it or not get it in the
subsequent years. This is how The Board, Superintendent, & Admin became so