Measure C ballots should be in mailboxes Schools & Kids, posted by Editor, Danville Weekly Online, on Apr 15, 2009 at 3:23 pm
Residents who live within the San Ramon Valley Unified School District should have received ballots in the mail for the upcoming May 5 Measure C Parcel Tax election. The ballot question asks residents to approve a $144 per year parcel tax to fund education efforts in the district.
Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 14, 2009, 12:46 PM
Posted by Anonymous, a resident of the San Ramon neighborhood, on Apr 15, 2009 at 3:23 pm
I am voting "No" on Measure C. Our District is sitting on 6.9 million dolars for times of "economic uncertainty," plus it is sitting on another 5.6 million dollars in "unencumbered reserves," and it has another 1 million dollars to aid with school needed purchases (replacement desks, etc.). The Measure C campaign wants you to believe that class-size reduction would "go away." Why the scare tactics? Are you voters putting two and two together when reading one of the ballot arguments, which supposes that a "yes" vote will help retain qualified teachers? The last time we had a parcel tax vote, the teachers received a series of permanent raises. While I believe that no parcel tax funds will be used for teacher's salaries, I know that class size reduction has, in years past, been paid for out of the general fund. If we don't pay class-size reduction from the general fund, then it frees up money in the general fund to pay for teacher's raises. It's moving money from one pot to the next (strategies they have used before) so they aren't "technically" breaking their promises. This type of behavior/strategy is exactly what makes the voters mistrust the District. Also, in years past, almost all pink slips issued were rescinded prior to the start of the new school year and very few jobs were lost.
Vote NO on Measure C. Have the courage to find out just how resourceful our District can be when it HAS TO BE.
Posted by Janet Orgill, a member of the Monte Vista High School community, on Apr 15, 2009 at 5:22 pm
I have already voted YES on Measure C, and would recommend that everyone in the SRVUSD do the same. Anonymous, you do realize that reserves are one-time money--if we spend it this year (and we will spend much of it just to make up for mid-year cuts by the state) we will simply have to make all of these cuts next year. Teacher salaries and benefits are ONGOING expenses! Last year's raise was a whopping 1%. I would be willing to bet that many teachers would happily give that back to save the jobs of hundreds of their peers--even though their income taxes and sales taxes just went up 1% with the rest of us.
A few other facts, just for fun:
1. Funds that have been designated for a certain "category" cannot be spent in another category. That is why building projects (or new desks) continue at district schools while teachers at those schools are receiving pink slips.
2. If categorical restrictions get lifted by the state, the swapping around of general fund money is exactly the "resourcefulness" that we are looking for from our district. Yes, they are robbing Peter to pay Paul, and many of us are doing exactly the same with our personal finances WHEN THERE ISN'T ENOUGH TO GO AROUND.
3. A whole lot of things that the district used to pay for are now being financed by the parents. To my knowledge, every school in this district has a/n learning fund, education fund, or Academic Boosters group that supports the academic goals of that school, including class-size reduction.
4. Every school district in the state must let teachers know in March if they MAY NOT have a job in the fall. With the state budget a moving target, and mid-year cuts creating a mockery of prudent planning, every district plans for the worst and hopes for the best. Better than recinding those pink slips is knowing that you don't have to issue them in the first place!
An even larger state budget deficit is looming, about $8 Billion, so look for further cuts to education. I for one would like to grant a little bit of financial stability to this school district so that we can focus on academic goals and 21st century learning, instead of the budget. My paltry $12 per month is a step in the right direction. I have plenty of courage to vote for the schools that brought me to Danville to begin with, that are helping my home to retain its value, and that are giving my children an excellent public education.
Posted by Ralph Hoffmann, a resident of the Walnut Creek neighborhood, on Apr 17, 2009 at 7:22 am Ralph Hoffmann is a member (registered user) of Danville Express
The Walnut Creek Chamber Board has now officially endorsed Measure C in the SRVUSD. My previous comment that the Civic Affairs Committee had voted unanimously to approve Measure C was premature, and I've apologized to the Board, via Jay, for that. The next tax battle will come May 19. The WC Chamber Board is neutral on all Props. I'm in favor of all. "Politics is the art of compromise." If we don't approve these State issues now, the delay will come back to haunt us, as delay increases costs.
Posted by Anonymous (2), a member of the San Ramon Valley High School community, on Apr 19, 2009 at 9:44 pm
To my Anonymous fellow resident - Bah, Humbug! We live in a community of many $1 million homes (but not me) and are nit picking over an amount many would spend for dinner on a night out. Unbelievable. Considering the headwinds that today's kids and America's future leaders have in front of them with global comptetition, it is amazing how stingy (selfish?) many people in this area truly are.
Posted by Rick, a resident of the Danville neighborhood, on Apr 28, 2009 at 6:10 pm
I keep having my comments erased. I'm sorry my opinions are too real for people to take. Your censorship won't stop me. I went to los cerros and monte vista. I'm 27 and I think 75% of the teachers were total losers. I remember my math teacher used to flirt with the 8th grade girls and hide behind the projector screen like a 4 year old. We don't need more money. We need less teachers. When my parents went to school, there were fifty to ninety kids per class, and they learned more. Why? Because everyone shut up and listened. We need discipline in the class. One way to break down discipline is to amp the kids up on sugar. We should not have candy and sodas sold in schools. The teachers unions fought getting rid of jumk food in schools because they want to tax it to give the money "to the schools," ie: to them. They don't give a damn about the kids. Their demands for smaller class sizes is because that means we have to hire more teachers. By the way, we already have plenty of money being sucked from our property taxes to go to our schools. The problem is, we don't spend it on our kids. We send it to Oakland and Richmond, on bilingual education for illegal immigrants and group home kids who murder our children (Rylan Fuchs.) No doubt, 90% of the extra money that they wish to take from us through prop C will within a few years be allotted to other schools.