The past year’s economic downturn has been devastating for many families across the country, but the financial consequences are now permeating all aspects of everyone’s lives.
Last fall voters rejected the Lakewood Local Schools system’s operating levy and one million dollars was cut from an already humble budget. Did you know our budget was 20 million which translates to $9,600 per child? Other school systems spend up to $13,000 per child. Unfortunately, our state government’s plan for establishing a constitutional funding system and reducing the reliance on local taxpayers won’t potentially be phased in until 2018. So for now, the burden is upon us.
I am in a state of panic! If the levy does not pass in May, Do you know what will become of our community? Having a sound school system is not only for the children. Your own property’s worth and value depends on it. What will our current “excellent” school system plummet to without updated text books, limited transportation; state mandated courses ONLY, and the loss of 42 teachers (we have 145) and the reduction of other members of the workforce by 30, as well as eliminate all art, music, gym, athletics and band? Will the children of our community have the elements needed to gain access to higher education? How will a 5 hour school day affect your ability to work? What effects could this have on your family and the need for additional child care expenses for day care?
I beseech that families in our community find the additional $40 a month in their household expenses to save our community and our school system. Please let there be a light at the end of the tunnel… and it not be an oncoming train!