Education

Boise School Levy, YES or NO?

After a coin flip at the GUARDIAN world headquarters, the YES folks won top billing for this story, but the GUARDIAN will stick with long standing policy and not endorse issues or candidates. We provide the forum to further public discussion of important issues. The election is March 13. (We really did flip for top billing).

YES on School Levy, Schools Do Great Job
By Mike Lanza

Boise’s public schools are a great success story. All four of Boise’s traditional high schools have made the annual Washington Post list of the top high schools in America—one of just 20 large districts in the entire country to place all of their high schools on that list. Our District has outstanding Advanced Placement, music, vocational-technical and numerous other programs.

Thanks to three years of cuts in state funding, our schools now face an operating deficit of $14 million beginning with the 2012-2013 school year. Voters will decide March 13 on a temporary, five-year school levy to fill the gap. All revenue will go toward maintaining the low class sizes and existing programs that have made our schools and students successful. In fact, the Boise School District spends less on administration, as a percentage of total spending, than all but one school district in Idaho. In making $22 million in administrative and operational cuts over the past three years, the District has accountably balanced its budget without affecting classrooms.
The math is simple. Staff makes up about 87 percent of the District’s budget. If the levy fails, our schools will have to make the biggest cuts in District history: $14 million equates to about 230 teachers. Larger class sizes and losses to popular programs would be unavoidable, compromising the quality of education delivered by one of America’s best school districts.

The school levy is supported by many civic and business leaders, including Mayor Dave Bieter, the City Council, KeyBank of Idaho, Treasure Valley Family YMCA, the Idaho Technology Council, and residents from all over Boise. They all agree: This levy represents an investment in our children’s future, our local economy, and our quality of life.
On March 13, vote for our future: Vote yes for Boise schools.

Mike Lanza is a co-chair of the volunteer group Friends of Boise Schools (yesforboiseschools.org).

NO On Levy, Just A Union Effort To Increase Salaries
By Jim Auld

The union inspired Boise School District levy election is based on the myth of insufficient funding. To scare patrons into supporting the election the BSD suggests the potential loss of 200 teachers. The facts say otherwise.

The 200l budget was $171 million with a student population of 26,778 or $6413 per student. The worst case suggested by BSD is a budget of $166 million for 25269 students or $6569 per student. So in the worst case there is more spending per student than in 2001.

Would class sizes increase? BSD says there are currently 1420 teachers with 25269 students, a student teacher ratio of 18 to 1. BSD tells us current classrooms average 24 students per teacher. So if BSD did release 200 teachers the class size would still be around 21 if all teachers were actually teaching. So what is the problem?

Is BSD having a problem with the truth? Isn’t this levy election just to raise money for salary increases, something most BSD patrons themselves have not seen for several years.?

This is a result of the almost total control of BSD by the teachers union. The union according to the Idaho Freedom Foundation receives about $850,000 in union dues paid by the taxpayer. (New teachers are told they don’t have to pay union dues.)

So it appears from my view the levy is a cynical attempt to raise funds for salary increases and to keep up the union cash flow while making it appear BSD is in dire financial straits while placing little Johnny”s education in jeopardy. What a crock!

Please send a message to BSD and vote no on Mar 13.

Jim Auld represents theAda County Property Owners Association

Comments & Discussion

Comments are closed for this post.

  1. Growthophobe
    Mar 2, 2012, 4:32 pm

    Anyone who votes for this levy should have their head examined. Boise schools already tax at _double_ the mill rate of the Meridian district; and this off of a much bigger property tax base (last I checked, Meridian doesn’t have anything like Boise’s downtown contructure, or Town Square Mall, or Micron. Clearly there’s a huge amount of waste in the Boise bureaucracy and the district needs to learn how to operate efficiently, using 21st century technology and management techniques before we give them another penny.

    EDITOR NOTE–FACT CHECK, most of downtown taxes are diverted away from schools, city, county and ACHD to the CCDC urban renewal projects and more are on the way in the 30th Street area.

  2. Jim, you own a bunch of rental properties. Admit that you will never support a school levy, regardless of the need based merits. You are simply protecting your bottom line, which is smart business but short sighted for the future of our community. Spending only $6500 per student is beyond pathetic, so don’t act like spending a token amount more per student than in 2001 is something to cherish.

    Kudos for assuming the levy would be used primarily on salary increases so that you can use your anti-union rhetoric to rally the right. That type of trolling will certainly catch some fish.

  3. Mr. Guardian – both sides make some compelling arguments. Here are a couple of my reactions.
    - The levy is “temporary”? Yeah, I suppose it is as written, but historically the voters are asked to reinstate that “temporary” levy when it expires. (Sales tax is “temporary” too… know what I mean? Just ’til we get back on our feet.)
    - Mr. Auld has done the math, and concluded that we’ll be spending more per student than we were 11 years ago, even if it fails. To me, that sounds like an argument in favor of the levy – after all, what has the price of food, or gas, or power, or HIGHER EDUCATION, done over those same 11 years?

    I’ve got to think it over. On the one hand, things are tough all over, not just for our educators! Us “ninety-nine percenters” are working on tight budgets! But on the other hand… I feel better about my tax dollars going to educate our kids, than on a lot of those taxpayer-sponsored endeavors.

    (I’m assuming it takes a super-majority to get it passed. And I’m in favor of that super-majority rule.)

  4. Rod in Boise
    Mar 2, 2012, 6:01 pm

    Neither the “for” or “against” arguments explained the meaning of the term “levy”, so I’ll assume it is a property tax levy (probably to pay back bonds the district would sell), and since I live in the BSD, it would cover my home.

    It is disturbing that the state legislature has cut funding for schools so much that the local school districts have to hold elections to replace that money. I would much prefer to fund schools from statewide income taxes than by property taxes, sales taxes, or anyother kind of tax.

    EDITOR NOTE–Rod, correct it is a property tax increase to make up for lost state funding, but it is just a “supplemental” levy to pay expenses, not for bonds which are for buildings.

  5. I love the how people believe supporting education directly translates to a better community and economy in the future. First off at some point the marginal benefit of our tax dollars towards education is very minimal. Second off who’s to say these future students even stay in Boise. Third off this assumption of a better economy is based on the fact that these schools train our students in a way so that they are demanded by employers for jobs and are ready to be a productive member of the workforce. I will vote NO on this levy as a drop out of BSD who went on directly to college and now is completely independent something most of my peers are still far away from achieving.

  6. My problem with Idaho schools is the crazy number of districts…are there really 105 school districts in Idaho? There are 8 school districts I can name off the top of my head in Canyon County. This creates an administrative burden that is fiscally irresponsible.

    Yes, I have heard all the arguments about local control. It is a euphemism for costing a lot more money and the loss of economies of scale for buying everything from toilet paper to the most expensive thing you can think of.

    We have superintendents, asst. superintendents, curriculum specialists, information officers and the list goes on and on. Time for some serious actions about consolidation.

    Also irksome are all the kids I see on school buses. More money needs to be spent on sidewalks and safe ways for kids to walk to school. A half mile or so to walk to school is not unreasonable.

  7. The truth lies somewhere in between. It does bother me that a yes vote would be bailing out the legislature who refuses to properly fund our schools.

  8. If St. Lukes and St. Als were paying their fair share of property taxes instead of putting their profits in bricks and mortar and competing for business through television, print media and billboard budgets we would all pay a lot less.

    The exemption on St. Lukes downtown campus alone is costing the Boise School District nearly $1/2 million per year.

  9. Those who compare numbers from 10 years ago are naive. Boise Schools are becoming very urban as seen by the number of free and reduced lunch kids and Title 1 schools. This brings in extra federal monies, but also demands local monies as well. Also those numbers from 2001, don’t count the extra monies needed to account for federal mandates like “No Child Left Behind”. Plus Boise has become a refugee center that requires extra help for those students.

    The real issue is how we fund schools. Not only has state dollars decreased, but so has property values. Property taxes are volatile and makes budgeting very difficult. The urban renewal reform looks to be gone this year but it still needs to be looked at in the future. Mr Auld should be upset about the funds channeled away from the schools to CCDC.

    The Boise vs. Meridian Levy is much different also. Meridian is trying to add back teachers and teaching days lost due to the decrease in funds. Boise is trying to keep class sizes constant as to their goal of great neighborhood schools.

    The opponents of the levy have not even come up with solutions. They blame the unions, professional development and high administrative cost as the real problem. These are fairly low cost when you factor in that class room salaries account for over 80 percent of the budget. The pundents will be hard pressed to come up with solutions when they say the teachers are not the problem.

    The pundents should be more upset that the Children First laws are now on the way to becoming unfunded mandates. The Luna Laws have become watered down with the reinstatement of per pupil funding and only 2 credits of of online learning.

    I will vote YES for the Boise Levy.

    “Disclaimer- My wife is a hard working teacher in Boise Schools. I also have one son that is in the GATE program and one with special needs.”

  10. boisetaxpayer
    Mar 3, 2012, 10:24 am

    This should be the age of government and taxing districts learning to work with less – as all citizens have been learning to do over the past several years. More responsibility for education needs to be passed on to the parent such as home school, volunteering in the classroom, paying for art/general classroom/ sports supplies, etc. According to my tax statement, the school districts are receiving a disproportionate amount of money as compared to all other taxing districts. I vote NO.

  11. Clancy hit a nerve with me… I wonder how much school money is sucked out of school districts in the name of Urban Renewal or as Rachel Gilbert says “food stamps for developers”.

    Nothing from me until URA’s are terminated.

  12. I forgot to add.. the Idaho Legislature created this monster and it is time for the Idaho Legislature to put it back in the box. They create the laws and they can change the laws. URA’s have been granted “wide powers” and in a lot of instances this power translates to taxpayer waste, fraud and abuse.

  13. The Boise Independent School District taxes at a rate higher than any other district in the State of Idaho – yet still wants more.

    A small example: In Meridian, spokesperson Eric Exline takes home a paycheck of $73,746 each year. While by Idaho standards that is certainly a nice salary – it is NOTHING compared to what Boise spokesperson Dan Hollar made in 2010: $97,760. BISD backers may note that Mr. Hollar’s pay was cut in 2011 – to a still staggering $86,000. In Nampa, spokesperson Allison Westfall makes a measly $66k.

    Supporters will say, “oh, that’s just one silly example.” Fine. Let’s look at those three districts in composite.

    The average pay in the Boise School District is HIGHER than any other school district in the state with the exception of Blaine County Schools (Sun Valley/Ketchum) and the Hansen School District. The average employee in Boise makes $41,101. The average employee in Meridian makes $25,245. In Nampa the average is $25,245. That is a composite of ALL employees – teachers, administrators, support staff – all of it. Makes your head snap back.

    The Boise School District needs to right-size itself, then come with hand out. Supporters say “oh, we’ve made all these cuts already and need more money.” Bunk.

    Supporters cite the strange “all of Boise’s traditional high schools made a WaPo list of greatness” stat. In fact, they seem to hook their whole argument on that. So go look up the data. None of Boise’s schools tops the list for Idaho. That honor goes to Coeur d’Alene HS which significantly out indexes the next closest school – Boise. In fact, Borah & Capital are beat out by the rural McCall-Donnelly HS.

    Furthermore, from the Washington Post’s own ABOUT section: “While not a measure of the overall quality of the school, the rating can reveal the level of a high school’s commitment to preparing average students for college.” The index also does not include all schools (go ahead, search for “Meridian” or “Mountain View”).

    The BISD says the average homeowner would pay $7 per month. They are asking every single person who owns a home to cough up an extra $420 when they already take a disproportionate share as it is.

    For the record, I volunteer my time in the Boise School District on a regular basis, and am a proud product of Capital HS. Fortunately, the amazing teachers taught me to think for myself and do research before blindly voting “yes” to something out of emotion.

  14. Growthophobe
    Mar 4, 2012, 1:01 am

    I couldn’t agree more with No Vote. For Clancy who says “The opponents of the levy have not even come up with solutions.” It’s not our job to come up with “solutions”; that’s what we hire over-paid school administrators to do. We the public set the budget, they the school management are charged with making the most effective use of that budget. Sadly, the schools-industrial complex seeks only more and more money; efficiency, they are incapable of doing a better job within a fixed budget.

    Hopefully by denying the school bureaucrat’s greedy demands for more money, we taxpayers will eventually force them either: (a) to find another career or (b) to utilize technological and business management advances to educate our children more efficiently.

  15. Voting No !
    Mar 4, 2012, 3:00 pm

    I’m certainly not defending the salary of “Dan the Man”, it is outrageous, but part of his salary is due to longevity – about 20 years. Keep in mind that his retirement (hopefully soon) will be based on his highest years of earnings so this “pay cut” is largely symbolic.

    Boise Schools has a strong tendency to start Administrative staff off with inflated salaries which, of course, means you wind up paying outrageous salaries later. Paying a “spinmeister” $ 86,000 (about 2 beginning teachers) then saying you don’t have enough money for the classroom really stretches creditability in my opinion.

    Another outrageous salary is that of the Boise Schools Transportation Supervisor. This first year person is paid over $ 70,000 (almost another 2 beginning teachers) to oversee a school bus contractor who actually owns and operates the school buses for the District. This salary is the second highest in the State. Only Blaine County is higher and not by much. Blaine County owns and operates their school buses, Boise does not.

    By comparison, the Meridian District Transportation Supervisor is paid about $ 60,000. That person directly oversees, unlike the Boise Transportation Supervisor, a District owned and operated fleet which is larger than the Boise fleet. Valley Regional Transit pays its managers about $ 50,000. Anyway you cut it Boise Schools is grossly overpaying its Transportation Supervisor.

    Boise Schools is still living in its glory days of the past. It has trouble accepting the fact it is rapidly becoming an older urbanized school district with all the negative implications that brings.

    Enough is enough. I’m voting NO.

  16. We will vote no on this one! Five years?? $70 million ?? There are already five Boise school items on our latest tax bill ! Once they are there they never seem to go away!

    Wasn’t it just a couple of years back they were consolidating schools because of declining enrollment?? Why more money for less kids??

  17. Growthophobe
    Mar 5, 2012, 12:21 am

    There have been an amazing amount of actual data in this discussion thread regarding the pay and expenses in the Boise district relative to others in this state. I know I shouldn’t expect the big spenders (of other people’s money) at the Statesman or KTVB to be factually objective, but it’s too bad this sort of analysis isn’t shared on our local mass media.

  18. It is interesting all the data being quoted is from other districts who are also holding Levy Elections. Caldwell, Vallivue, Nampa, Meridian and Boise are all holding levy elections March 13.

    Either there is gross mismanagement in Treasure Valley schools, funding shortfalls or a combination of both. I think a few major items could be fixed at the state level,so districts don’t come looking to the taxpayers.

    Areas to fix at the state level.
    -Consolidation of districts and administrative positions.
    -Urban Renewal reform
    -Boise’s charter should be changed so they operate like other districts (much like the change to UofI).
    -Standard salary schedules for adminstrators.

    One question for all, “What is a teacher worth salary wise?”

  19. boisetaxpayer
    Mar 6, 2012, 1:38 pm

    Clancy- I don’t have a great answer for what a teachers salary should be. But I think a few factors play into the low teacher pay. Those factors are every weekend off, major holidays and several months off during the summer and typically working an 8-5pm. Teachers can add to their salary to coaching,working in other school programs, summer school, etc. You don’t find to many jobs with such a nice family oriented schedule – which in itself carries value. So, to answer your question I’m thinking mid $30s- to high $40sK annually as a range from new to experienced teachers. Extra money can be made by working extra hours during off months, etc. I don’t think teachers deserve a full time 2080hr/year pay for working 10mos out of the year. Just my opinion.

  20. meridianalum_boiseparent_Vote Yes
    Mar 8, 2012, 1:26 am

    As a native Idahoan, I am saddened by many of these posts.

    There seem to be two vantage points:

    No, because of bottom line and or hate toward public education: administrators and teachers alike.

    Yes, to support the quality education the BSD is producing.

    For the people on the No side willing to listen, it seems there is a business numbers approach to this. Most often, simple math numbers and business application cannot be made to education. It is simply not apples to apples. The total number of students and total number of teachers do not make for realistic ratios.

    First example: special education (federally funded around 20% and requiring the district to fund the other 80%) have low class sizes (3-15) and Federal Law mandates classified assistants too. Specialized courses including advanced placement, often have fewer students (at one time were capped to provide more specialized attention). In order to offer these types of classes, compensation is made by having other classes be much larger. The number of Full Time Employees is business-mathematics. The FTE is calculated by the number of enrolled students. Fact is the BSD runs under the allotted amount of administrators the state suggests for a district their size in order to attempt maintaining smaller class sizes.

    Second example: the business world is way more administrator heavy. Education is no where near as top heavy. The average business manager oversees 12 people while the average public school administrator oversees 38 (not counting classified employees, students, or parents).

    Third, what type of a business do people want to work for? –The one which will pay better and provide a better atmosphere. I am a Meridian School District Alum. I loved my time in school and received a quality education. I have completed my MA and I am working toward a PHD. However, my wife and I made the choice to move to Boise this past summer from Meridian to ensure our children will attend BSD schools.

    Meridian is no longer what it once was. Rocky Mountain is large and new (noisy too, again lack of funding, so they had to cut corners and polished the cement in hallways instead of laying real flooring), but as all Meridian high schools, classes are too large, there are too many students for teachers to be able to give and require adequate work expectations, and the BSD snipes many of the best teachers away for higher pay and better working conditions.

    boisetaxpayer sets an example teaching salary which starts thousands higher than the state pay scale for starting teachers places them last in the country for pay on the high end. Take a look at how other countries (those fairing better in education: Finland, Japan, etc.) pay their teachers and their comparative buying power.

    P.S. I coached high school for a few years for $1000 a year. Coaches do not do it for the money. This is how Meridian can still offer extra-curricular events after their failure last year (even more cuts to coaching salaries and athletes pay to play: significantly lowering numbers of participants.) I also do not my kids’ teachers working additional jobs causing them to divert attention away from the classroom.

    I take the time to write this because I hope the failings of Meridian do not follow suite in Boise.

    The current levy is only to maintain what is currently happening in the Boise School District today. It is not and cannot be used to raise salaries: only to maintain. Mr. Jim Auld, please place your political agenda aside. You do your share of slander in your piece. First, Idaho is a Right to Work State. There is not a teachers’ union. There is an association. (For a quick follow-up, it is easier for a school to fire a bad teacher than for most businesses (prominent places with adequate salaries) to get approval from HR to fire someone: i.e. Wells Fargo.) Looking at numbers spanning a decade leaves out a crucial piece of financial evidence. While the private sector was booming, education never saw radical increases in pay or budgeted monies. People are so quick to judge when times are hard, yet forgetful when they are good. Ultimately, the suggestions you make about raising salaries and union cash flow are inaccurate and fraudulent. This is an operational levy to maintain current expenditures. This is why due to state law, it will only take a majority to pass instead of needing a 2/3 majority to pass. Idaho is 1 of only 2 states requiring a 2/3 majority on bonds and levies (levies looking to add additional support-not the case for this scenario).

    To address another response, I have been doing my homework on BSD bonds and levies. The dollar amount is the maximum they will take, and the BSD historically has taken less than the total amount when they can do with less. Second, there does not seem to be a habitual need to return or rerun bonds. This may not be true in the future though due to continued decreases in funding.

    Without a quality public education, the doors for opportunity will be closed for many.

    I will vote “Yes.”

  21. We can all thank our Republican legislature and Jim Risch for this school funding fiasco.

  22. meridianalumnboiseparentvoteyes – your reply is as long as your username, but again – long on emotion and short on facts. Hopefully the facts will prevail over emotion on Tuesday.

  23. meridianalum_boiseparent_Vote Yes
    Mar 11, 2012, 9:36 pm

    -
    -
    -
    No Vote: please enlighten me on where I lack facts.

    I agree, I hope facts will win out with a victorious levy Tuesday.

    High school graduates will:
    -Sell to the world.
    -Buy from the world.
    -Work for international companies.
    -Manage employees from other cultures and countries.
    -Collaborate with people all over the world in joint ventures.
    -Compete with people on the other side of the world for jobs and markets.
    -Tackle global problems, such as AIDS, avian flu, pollution, and disaster recovery (Center for International Understanding).

    To best compete in a globalizing world, students will need a quality education.

  24. Voting No !
    Mar 12, 2012, 3:48 pm

    Meridianalum

    A couple comments on your dissertation.

    You say the BEA is not a Union but an Association. OK, it may not be technically a Union. It may not be affiliated with the AFL-CIO. Maybe we could call it a Guild. In any case, the Boise District negotiates with the BEA on wages and benefits and those wages and benefits form the basis for wages and benefits paid to other District employees.

    If the BEA is only an Association, as you maintain, why did it threaten to strike Boise District in the mid 90s and why did the District, in response to that strike threat, implement strike management procedures? Unions strike. If an Association strikes what is the difference between an Association striking and a Union striking? A Union (or union if you prefer) is nothing more than an association of people with common interests pursuing a common goal. In this case, I’d suggest an Association by any other name is a Union no matter what sheep’s clothing it is dressed in and regardless of whether or not it has AFL-CIO affiliation.

    I agree teachers should be paid a living wage and be compensated for their educational background. I also support non – certified staff being paid less, in most cases, than certified staff – something that doesn’t happen in the Boise District. But as part of the whole wage discussion shouldn’t we talk about summer school principal jobs, summer driver ed instructors, or summer school teachers? All that is extra income by choice. And then there are those who chose to fight wildland fires (or any other job) during the summer months. Again, extra income by choice.

    And please don’t try and compare Idaho starting teacher salaries to the national average. That’s an apples and oranges comparison. A better comparison might be to rural states or Intermountain states or States that have demographics similar to that of Idaho. The “problems” that teachers have to deal with in Idaho schools pale in comparison to those in urbanized districts in larger states.

    It’s my observation that Meridian District underpays, and overworks, its employees. On the other hand, Boise District overpays its management. I’d suggest Boise District try a Zero Based Budget approach at least one time just to see how things fall out.

    And speaking of management, I assume you’re talking about school principals when you say the average public school administrator oversees 38 people. Let’s take that a step or two up the ladder, like to the Area Director level, and the number becomes more like 16 – pretty close to that “average business manager.”

    Lastly, you say “… there does not seem to be a habitual need to return or rerun bonds.” The reason there was no increase in taxes for the last construction bond was because the new bond merely replaced an old bond that was about to expire. Had there not been a new bond we all would have gotten a tax decrease when the old bond expired.

  25. Thank you, Guardian, for posting an article that presents two points of view.

    I believe voters are misled when we are told that the only way to improve education is to increase spending. Education costs around the nation have risen dramatically over the years, but test scores nationwide are either stagnant or sinking. It is time for us to look at where that money actually goes.

    Our children ought to be able to obtain a “quality education” from numerous sources, not just a government-run, unionized public education system.

  26. I attended a meeting with my legislators and fellow citizens some time back. One gentleman took the floor and almost shouted that he wanted teachers to to their fair share and work 8 hour days. I stood up and laughed. I’m married to a teacher who puts in roughly 60 hours a week, and has two Master’s Degrees that we paid for ourselves. Nobody is giving us anything. Summers off have never afforded us a vacation. Instead, my husband has taken classes and worked, since I have 3 auto immune disorders and cannot add to the household income. It really gripes me when people spew out venom that teachers don’t put enough time in. Come over to my house some time. And deal with all the behavioral problems many of you people send our way as well. 13, one year.

  27. Boise continues to open the doors to out of district kids so the district can collect the ADA monies. Thus the oversized classrooms. We pay the hight tax and extra levies to help educate those kids. Send them back to their districts. Let the BISD take care of our own kids, let the district shrink the staff and administration to adjust for our own actual student numbers. Adjust salaries to be in line with the rest of the districts in the state. Audit the district to prove how top heavy the district has become.

  28. Native to Boise
    Mar 13, 2012, 11:26 pm

    Voting No! uses the cliche of apples to oranges and then builds a logical fallacy within his own argument using logos (appealing to logic) as he attempts fake his affirmation of confidence.

    Voting No! writes,”The ‘problems’ that teachers have to deal with in Idaho schools pale in comparison to those in urbanized districts in larger states.” Following this same logic, Boise is not the same as surrounding districts. It faces different issues as Boise continues to shift, change, and “urbanize.” Boise High School, as defined by the Great State of Idaho, is the only urban school in the state.

    Furthermore, continuing the “apple-cart” analogy, costs of living in Boise are much higher than Meridian, Kuna, Nampa, Caldwell, etc.

    Last, if paying people better generates better quality, as Boise versus the other districts, why not support it?

    P.S. Voted yes, and things are looking good. It seems Boise is still an area supporting education unlike many on this message board.

    In a capitalistic society, those private school supporters should be happy. The better public education is, the harder the private sector must work to create a desirable product.

  29. Voting No !
    Mar 14, 2012, 3:04 pm

    Native,

    I do not attempt to fake my affirmation of confidence. As I noted above there are differences – whether they be regional, state based or local. I just prefer comparisons to be pertinent to the issue at hand. I agree each school district is different – unique, if you will. That’s why I don’t support school district consolidation. I really don’t believe it will save much money, if any, and may create more problems than it would purportedly solve.

    And in past posts on the Guardian I’ve noted that Boise District is becoming an older, more urbanized District. Nothing new there.

    “,,, costs of living in Boise are much higher than Meridian, Kuna, Nampa, Caldwell, etc.” And your FACTUAL basis for that statement is?

    When the quality of the District management reaches the quality of the instruction in the classroom I’ll support District levies and bond issues. But until the District begins answering questions about its budget, explains why it is expanding and enhancing programs (see budget) while at the same time saying it doesn’t have enough money, answers questions about its non – certified salary scales and positions, and open enrollment I’ll be voting no.

  30. Voting No !
    Mar 14, 2012, 3:13 pm

    Overtaxed,

    Good point. Couldn’t agree with you more. I’ve said basically the same thing in other posts concerning this election. More than 4% of Boise District enrollment is from outside the Boise District.

    Good points on salaries and the audit also!

    Too bad more folks weren’t as enlightened and aware as you.

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