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The way we pay for education is fundamentally flawed

Saturday, April 26, 2014
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The way we pay for education is fundamentally flawed

The recent discussion about financing schools reflects both a lack of knowledge of English and an understanding of the institutions associated with the financing of education.

Given that cities are still providing free fire and police protection to nonprofits and then saying cities cannot afford more money for public education, it would be more to the point to say that after spending money on high- priority matters, money left over goes to low-priority areas. Education evidently falls in the latter category.

Given that school board members are elected with the support of teachers, you should not be surprised that despite abysmal urban graduation rates and the fact that teachers could be replaced with much-lower-priced help, school boards continue to reward their supporters with raises.

Since nothing encourages irresponsible government [like] spending funds that you do not have to collect from your taxpayers, we can attribute school boards’ generosity to their teacher/supporters to state aid for “poor” districts.

Since by law and custom, giving birth is a choice made by a pregnant female, it follows that the education of children is a community responsibility only insofar as education costs are not off-loaded to the community. The cost of education should be borne by the individual who chose to give birth.

Intelligent public policy requires a careful evaluation of the world we live in.

Fred Barney

Albany

Garver right about riverfront development

John Garver’s April 20 Viewpoint reminded me of the warnings that the U.S. Geological Survey had printed on the topographic map of Anchorage, Alaska.

Red lines indicated unstable slopes where landslides could occur on cliffs along the shore. But the view of the mountains and water was wondrous and made real-estate values very high. Multilevel mansions were constructed, satisfying customers and developers, as well as establishing a high-end tax base for the community.

Then, on Good Friday 1964, houses slid into the sea, as geologists had predicted. During the weeks after the Great Alaskan Earthquake, I joined other geologists in updating the Red Line. Developers and politicians howled in opposition to our warnings.

Nobody needs a college education to realize that oceans, lakes and rivers are dynamic entities; wild things that we love to watch and should treat with caution. I like to visit, but would never live there. Development in a flood plain is worse than foolish.

My pessimistic side feels certain that vested interests will continue to ignore scientists. However, I hope that insurance companies will take notice of the risk and assess appropriate costs. Just think of the heyday that lawyers will have, should John Garver’s predictions come true. I don’t want to be there.

Kernan Davis

Glenville

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comments

April 26, 2014
10:22 p.m.
+1 votes
jjhehir says...

The purpose of public education is to have an educated citizenry. Funding that education is the responsibility of all.

April 27, 2014
8:21 a.m.
+0 votes
Hamelot says...

The ALCO site was mostly underwater during Hurricane Irene. It's hard to believe that some think that won't happen again. Owning a condo or business there? Just think of the cost of flood insurance, which will be required.

 

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