Elephant Ears

This blog is dedicated to the political happenings in the Valley and Southwest Virginia. As the the name implies, this blog will have posts based on what is heard by this elephant's (GOPer's) ears. It is also a great treat to get while at the county fair or a carnival.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Spending Restraint in Education

Mr. Brightside at Morgan's Riflemen has a great post up about school budgets. While it points to specifically the Valley, the entire state is probably affected the same way; our local school budgets are getting bloated. As Republicans, we need to establish fiscal restraint at all levels of government, and starting with the local ones would probably help the most.

Today too many people think money is the answer to education, but its not. Most Valley schools spend much less than systems throughout Virginia and still have equal or better SOL scores than those schools that spent alot more.
Wasteful spending is everywhere in school budgets. For example, schools don't need to be built every few years just b/c people want a nice new building. Thats wasteful. As long as a building meets capacity requirements, keep it in good shape and it will last a long time.
Same goes for books. Last time I checked, math doesn't change. Why then do our school systems buy new books every few years even when there is nothing wrong with their current books? Again, money could be saved if books were replaced every 10 years instead of 3-5.

We need to hold our local elected officials accountable for this wasteful spending problem and try to right the ship. Encourage your school boards, supervisors and city council members to slow the spending growth that exists in school budgets. If everyone does that, it will go a long way toward curbing spending growth at the state and national levels as well.

7 Comments:

  • At 2/13/2006 11:40 AM, Blogger Virginia Centrist said…

    Cross comparing spending per pupil (rural vs suburban vs urban) is very misleading. The costs are different. It's better to compare within regions. How does your funding stack up to places with similar demographics breakdowns?

     
  • At 2/13/2006 11:41 AM, Blogger Virginia Centrist said…

    "Encourage your school boards, supervisors and city council members to slow the spending growth that exists in school budgets"

    I had to laugh when I read that.

     
  • At 2/13/2006 1:29 PM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    Yea I know, but we can dream right?
    Agreed on different expenses, but thats the point. People will say, "oh we dont get enough money as "X"." I am saying it isnt based on funding, its based on the area and students you have to work with. It also makes a big difference with your teachers. That isnt always dictated by pay either.

     
  • At 2/14/2006 11:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Well, well, well. Now Mr. Hokie, you set about to prove the axiom that "because someone once attended school they believe themselves to be an expert on education."

    Let's get specific with just one of your claims:

    "Wasteful spending is everywhere in school budgets. For example, schools don't need to be built every few years just b/c people want a nice new building."

    Tell us of specific instances where this has taken place.

    And none of that "this is what I've heard" nonsense either. You made the claim, now back it up.

     
  • At 2/15/2006 12:45 AM, Blogger GOPHokie said…

    I didnt think I was acting as if I know everything about education, but I guess you do anon.

    My sister is 3 years behind me in school and she has had different books than me in practically every high school class, even though she takes the exact same classes I took. Many of the books I had were brand new when I got them, and I seriously doubt they were worn out in 3 years. Worse yet, those books were either throw away or kept in storage, not sold. Perfectly good books ditched for no apparent reason except the teachers wanted new books.
    Here at VT I have seen the same sidewalk torn up and put back 4 times almost as soon as the concrete dried b/c they changed the pipe or drain that was being put under it.

    Some systems save money much better than others. Even so, there is much room for improvement.

     
  • At 2/15/2006 4:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Anon:

    "Wasteful spending is everywhere in school budgets. For example, schools don't need to be built every few years just b/c people want a nice new building."

    They just dumped $86 million into renovating Handley High School in Winchester, Va.

    True, the building was built in the 1920's but they could have built two brand new schools for that price.

     
  • At 2/19/2006 1:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    All textbooks should be eliminated for digital texts. Easier to transport and access.

    Keep books in classromms for reference and in libraries, but didgital texrs are the way of the future

     

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