To the Editor:
I just read the submission titled “Easton Board of Education Budget and School Enrollment: A Budget Crisis.” and I am utterly shocked how inaccurate and narrow-sighted the information is that was put forward in that piece.
While the the numbers and the graphs in the post look fancy…they hardly tell the BOE budget story whatsoever. For starters, one can not use the headcount to dollar comparison as this poster did. (That may work in analyzing a health club budget but not a school system with complex needs and finances.) It does not account for things such as special services which now account for 25% of the budget and are state mandated resources–not things we just simply “want.”
The cost of health insurance has increased year over year. The cost of payroll increases year over year due to teacher tenure steps. There are capital expenditures year after year such as oil tank removals, gym floors, roofs, plumbing, etc. NONE of this is accounted for in the reasoning used in the editorial. This years budget request of 4.24% is “baseline 0.” It funds our schools contractual obligations and fundamental needs and nothing more.
Furthermore, the standardized test results and benchmarking that were mentioned are totally irrelevant when discussing the budget. Does the original poster really think achievement levels will improve with LARGER class sizes? Do they actually believe school-wide achievement levels should be tied to a budget allowance??