A first grade teacher in Manchester, NH, who was diagnosed with leukemia, was recently laid off by her school district because a budget referendum failed to pass. She will become one of 78 teachers in the district to lose their jobs, and, as one of the newest in the district, she is automatically on the chopping block. Fair? Perhaps it is fair due to union constraints to eliminate the position, but hopefully, the taxpayers could find it in their hearts to keep her health insurance and possibly her pay for at least one year to help her (emotionally and mentally if not physically) fight the cancer and not have to pay millions, assuming she survives, after she recovers.
Despite the recession, there has to be an overwhelming push to keep our children educated and to keep schools fully staffed and learning properly facilitated. Right? I would sincerely hope so, but it seems like so many communities are refusing to raise their taxes a nominal amount to keep their children properly educated. In a world with such a push on standardized testing, don't these people realize smaller class sizes and more variations in courses and methods will actually AID overall learning and only support this 'teaching to the test' idea? Not only is it better for the students, but it's better for the teachers as they will have more opportunity to assign more hands-on projects, more in-depth research papers to assist students in really extracting the themes and ideas from materials. My former hometown proposes raising taxes (according to a local newspaper) by nearly $600,000 to stave off any potential layoffs or budget shortfalls that would snowball into the following year (an amount nearly totally bridged year-to-year by the state of CT). This boils down to...get this $72.15 per household per year. For the price of a fancy dinner out for two or for a regular family dinner at a restaurant, you can save your children from classes of 30+, keep electives and sports intact, and ensure scores will be raised year-over-year again. Sounds pretty simple.
But then again, everything sounds simple if you're willing to budge on things and there are MANY who will not budge their stances.