Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Please vote for kids when the time comes

I don't talk politics often, but I can't let this one go without a word.

This is for California residents, but anybody else is free to read as they desire.

In a few months you will be asked to vote on our tax rate. This vote is a simple choice. If we vote to keep up our taxes, our school system will only be half as in the red as we will be if we decide to lower our taxes we will cripple our school system. It is that simple.

We have had an outbreak lately of kids getting high and dealing drugs on campus because we had to layoff half our security guards. If a computer breaks, we don't have anyone to fix it. I paid $100 a couple of weeks ago to repair a school computer. Some of my friends are sending me boxes of Post-its because I ran out and the school has no more to give me.

Don't get me wrong, I like my job. I love these kids and I will teach them what they need to know if I have to paint on the white board in ink made from my own blood. But every year since these layoffs started it's gotten more and more difficult to get by.

This time our losses will come mostly from elementary schools. Thirty-one kids per teacher, is what we will have. In ELEMENTARY school. Imagine how much less education they're getting. I cringe to think of how far behind those kids will be by the time they get to us.

We're not allowed to order new textbooks. Summer school has been canceled for anyone but seniors and juniors. We may have to close down our school library for most of the week. I have no idea what will happen to our arts programs, because thus far we've been lucky enough to still have music and art and drama, but electives are no doubt on the chopping block. We already lost all of our health classes.

I'm going to post this again when the time comes to vote, but I just want to give you guys a heads up. I know we all want more money these days. We don't want to pay any more taxes. But the truth is, if we don't agree to this tax increase our kids WILL suffer.

This isn't about my salary or my job. I'm not going to be laid off and I'm not losing money no matter what happens. This isn't about unions or politicians or NCLB or whatever red herring people want to throw out there. This is about our kids. Please do not let them down for a few extra bucks.


  1. It just disgusts me that the education system is not number 1 on any politician's list.

    Good luck. I hope the majority votes in favor of keeping up the taxes to keep schools running and help students.

  2. Leigh M.9:52 AM

    Well said, Emily. (This would make a nice 'Letter to the Editor - hint hint.)

  3. Anonymous10:28 AM

    My one concern in your plea is where the funds that you do have are being allocated. I have a friend in administration and he makes a fortune. Why isn't anyone addressing that the trickle down theory doesn't work and is not working in schools. I don't think teachers are over-paid, necessarily, but the school system in America is broken, whether the taxes are upheld or repealed. Yes, the situation will be worse if more money isn't thrown at the problem, as is the usual case, but no one ever mentions how to revamp the system so the money schools do have is utilized in the most effective way. For example:

    Either way, good luck.... there needs to be more teachers like you!

  4. Well said Emily!
    I work in a school in Sydney. Education is incredibly important and must be properly funded. Unfortunately very few countries provide enough money for all students to be properly educated



  5. I want Finland. Turned their education system and results around entirely, now score highest in the world.

    Two things I found out today, 1 in 5 Californians goes hungry, and $5000 for every single person in this country is how much we spend on defense.

    Under Nixon the top tax rate was 70%. Reagan brought it down to 28% and swept through deregulation. Tax rate illustrated:
    Deregulation's impact illustrated:


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