Tuesday, March 03, 2009
the sorry state of affairs in education in Florida
I attended a three hour school board meeting today. The meeting was moved to a larger venue to accommodate the expected crowd. The room wasn't large enough. The aisles were packed and people stood against the walls. Our district, like every other school district in Florida, is faced with horrific decisions. Emotional students, teachers and parents spoke about the importance of educating our children. Nobody wants to reduce services to our students, except our state representatives evidently. I am ashamed that Florida is ranked fiftieth in the nation when it comes to education funding . What are our representatives thinking? I am proud of our district leadership team. They are taking the steps, as painful as they are, to prepare us for the reality of our budget. They are trimming away at years of unquestioned practices and the resulting waste and inefficiency, which needed to be done with or without a budget crisis. I applaud their hard work. Angry, often uninformed people, aren't helping matters but I can understand and honor and even appreciate their emotions. This is important to all of us and nobody wants to see good teachers lose their jobs, or programs cut or schools closed. When the public comment part of the board meeting was over these same angry folks left in mass. They didn't hear the measures that are being taken now to do all that can be done to keep as many employees and services available as possible. That's sad. They will still be uninformed, thinking the wrong people are the enemy.