Saturday, May 5, 2012

Local school issues

I had a great time in Europe, but it's wonderful to be back home.  So ... onto local news.

We live in (and our children attend) the Selinsgrove school district.  They've had budget problems, and are laying off a number of teachers (story here).

I don't think anybody has really taken the school district to task for their past decisions.  Everybody now recognizes that the school district has less money and that tough choices have to be made.  However, why do we have less money?  Part is the economy, of course, but part is from the decisions made by school board members in the past several years.

When my oldest started school, he was at a building called "Jackson-Penn elementary" but they were building a new school.  Why a new school?  Jackson-Penn seemed perfectly functional.  However, a new school was built.  It is nice, but it cost a lot of money.  The payments that are being made to pay off that school could have kept several teachers employed.

These are questions the press should be finding/reporting:

1. What was the total cost of the new buildings/construction?
2. What are the annual debt payments on these buildings?
3. How many teachers could have remained employed for that money?

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