I would like to thank the members of the Southern Tioga School Board for their willingness to take pause in this time of financial crisis by opting for the feasibility study.
While we are still facing a monstrous deficit that will inevitably translate into higher taxes, reduced staffing and loss of educational opportunities, we must forge a solid plan to face the future. No one would wish for a school to close. No one wants increased travel time for students or fewer opportunities, but wishes and wants don't balance budgets.
Whether you agree with our governor or not, his budget reflects an attempt to balance the Commonwealth's financial position. After all, the money he is spending comes from our pockets too.
I would suggest that instead of writing to all (state and federal) Senators and Representatives whining about decreased funding, that we challenge them to write legislation that is fair to all students in all districts.
Untie school districts from the anchor of prevailing wage laws. Create a method of evaluating students that doesn't kill creativity in the classroom. Bring retirement and benefit plans to a level that reflects the world in which we live. The common sense approach doesn't get headlines and sound bytes but that shouldn't stop us from pouring over the financial spreadsheets and honestly evaluating our district's educational opportunities.
As Henry Ford said, "The best we can do is size up the chances, calculate the risks involved, estimate our ability to deal with them, and then make our plans with confidence."
Together, I believe that we can pull the Southern Tioga School District out of this predicament and make an even brighter future for all of our students.
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom