Saturday, December 24, 2011

School Consolidation is bad

School Consolidation is bad.  Think about it.  It is just "kicking the can down the road" for a future day of reckoning.  The sickness to be cured in the schools is the out of control, over-inflated teacher salaries with unreasonable longevity step and coursework step increases, increasing pensions and increasing health benefits.  Consolidating school districts will only buy you about 3 to 5 years.  After that, the savings from consolidation will have been lost due to skyrocketing teacher compensation.  SUGGESTION- Go in the opposite direction.  Open competition between public and private schools. This School Choice with vouchers and Pell grants allow parents to choose which public and private school their children should attend.  Competition breeds excellence in teaching.  Our present public school, union-controlled teaching system breeds failing schools, which is obvious to all of us by now.  Let us push School Choice with vouchers.  Don't support consolidation, since the school sickness will continue.


Anonymous said...

All of those Administrators in the various districts are eating up valuable resources that could be used to teach our children. Any business man knows there is an economy of scale where the larger the order, the lower the unit price. Not only that, focusing on one specific curriculum spread out over the entire county will allow the teachers to be moved where needed. That will reduce the number of teachers that are needed overall. Economical utilization of buildings could be achieved by shifting students where you have extra space and closing down those buildings that have proven to be under utilized.

The new phrase of the week "kicking the can down the road" would only happen if there was a half hearted effort by those involved.

This is the only idea that fits long term success that I have heard. Fix future teacher salaries and benefits when negotiating the contracts where it should be handled. Teachers have a right to collective bargaining just like anyone else does. They negotiated the current contracts fair and square.

Ralph Mitchell said...

You make good points, however, your point are more applicable to manufacturing businesses than education. All education is local. It is the magic that happens between teachers and students. Centralization of teaching will increase cronyism and decrease parental power. I vote for vouchers, school choice, localism over school consolidation any day. Once you start centralization, it never stops. First, county school districts, then regional school districts, then state school districts, then national school district. My solution is to Solve the problem of public school monopolies with teacher union monopolies via school competition among public and private schools with parents spending their $5000 to $10000 voucher or "Pell" grant at the school of their choice. The good schools will flourish, the bad schools will go out of business. This is the way to achieve excellence. Remember, to achieve excellence, always get rid of the
3rd party. You have a parent/consumer and a school with teachers. Get rid of the 3rd parties, such as teacher's unions and state/local bureaucrats.

Ralph Mitchell said...

Let talk about how bad union contracts have destroyed their employers. The US Post Office workers' contract has a NO LAYOFF clause, which requires the post office to pay people for doing nothing and had almost destroyed the Post Office. The Kingston Fire Dept. contract has had a NO LAYOFF clause which has almost destroyed the City of KIngston tax base by paying out $7 Million per year when the city can only afford about $4 Million per year. The Kingston Schools, which are $12 Million in the red, give their teachers permanent raises for longevity and for taking courses, both of which have little bearing on student success. Can you think of other examples? I think I have made my point.