Lakewood OH

The pain of precision is worth it in the end

For months, North Olmsted school officials have worked to assure residents the district had plans for cuts and cost savings should voters approve a 7.9-mil levy in support of operating the schools. After two failed attempts, the measure has passed by the skin of its teeth.

Now, everyone needs to see how the chips fall. Coming soon to West Life: a budget line item-driven series looking at cuts, expenditures, savings and how the district will look in its effort to break from business as usual.

Don Pangrac, this one’s not just for you. This is also for millage proponents who invested in themselves the belief that what they supported would be justifiable. This will be for the district to presumably demonstrate the value of their word.

More accurately, this will help everyone understand – with greater precision – the meaning of what has been said all along. It never looked to me, from the outside, that there was clear understanding by those opposed to the millage, of why the district spends $12,000 per student. Worse, it seemed the district didn’t know quite how to respond except that, in the way they are currently doing business, it costs that much to educate teenagers.

Let’s make it clearer, shall we?

On another note, there may never be agreement on whether the cuts agreed to by teaching staff, should the millage pass, are actual cuts. This is the state in which Columbus found itself last year, when legislators agreed to delay a tax reduction and it was called a tax increase.

I’m calling bull-hockey and saying that argument misses the issue here anyway. Elections are a matter of that kind of politicking, and politicking is no way to run a government. Is the district spending less is the question in our minds, plain and simple.

Is there a Jon Stewart in the house? If this was a facebook page I would post this “@ohiostategovernment.”

So we will ask and then ask again in an effort to show that the district is living up to the statement made by Superintendent Cheryl Dubsky that it will no longer be business as usual.

At the end of the series, I will bet now that there will still be disagreement or disbelief. Proving anything these days is becoming harder than ever, ironically, in a world in which we have more information at our fingertips than ever before.

With no interest in sounding like a martyr, we’ll do this anyway. It’s about the process and getting things as precise as possible.



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