Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Middletown Ohio School Levy - Letter To The Editor

Board President John VenturallaIn a recent Letter to the Editor (as published in the Middletown Journal) Monsignor Paul Metzger outlines 1.4 million in cuts he believes the Middletown City School District should make. The cuts are all in the areas of staffing and all according to the writer are positions that are non critical or that do not exist in other similar sized school systems. The most interesting point in the letter is simply that if these cuts in staffing were made there would be no need for a new tax levy.

The opening comments of the letter are listed below:

I would like to give you some thoughts as to why the levies failed and may fail again. What inspired this letter was reading (that) they could not give the students paper with lines to practice writing the alphabet because (the paper is) too expensive, so they will give them plain paper. The enclosed statements were sent to all the board members. The (board) president did call me and was clear in some of his explanations. Basically, he said they will see what other schools are doing.

This is what I requested:

1. Do not let the grade-school children walk to school, across railroad tracks, busy streets and places where there are no sidewalks, but bus them. High school students have cars or let them walk a reasonable distance.

2. Since the school is the lowest academically in the county and you want to shorten the class day by two hours, you should be thinking of adding more time than the old schedule. Those who plan the bus route have found, by letting all schools dismiss at 1:30 p.m., they are saving a sum of money. So what is the difference if it is 1:30 p.m. or 3:30 p.m.?

3. Everything has been taken away from the children. You say you cannot buy paper, text books or school supplies because the levy failed. I will show you the reason for Middletown's school problems.
I think the board members are intelligent people and generally do a good job, but they have gone wild on positions in the school. There is a position called "superintendent" — a very important position. Many people cannot understand the salary of $121,000, which is reasonable. But add the retirement (14 percent) of $16,940, and health, $6,000, for a total of $143,940

Monsignor Paul Metzger

To read the entire letter from Monsignor Paul Metzger or to comment on these proposals visit the Middletown Ohio Community Website and click on the discussion form. In the form follow the link for School Tax Issues in the Middletown City Schools Forum and then click on “Why Levies Fail”.


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