Public Education and the State Budget
Why do you seem to favor charter schools?
Do you believe we can educate all NY’s children in charter schools?
Do you think schools competing for already limited funding will produce better schools?
Do you believe education should be farmed out to private businesses or corporations?
Do you favor vouchers and how would school know how much money they had to work with each year?
Do you have a clear plan for dividing tax monies between public schools, private schools and charter schools, especially given the problems already experienced in determining formulas for funding schools in wealthier and in poorer neighborhoods?
Should the tax base of a given city, town, or village determine the size of its school budget?
How much of a priority in our state budget are our schools?
What is our priority structure? Could we see a list in order from 1 to whatever?
Is NYS short on funds?
Have school districts lost large numbers of students and do they therefore need to be downsized?
Obviously some school districts are more successful at turning out competent graduates than others and obviously it’s difficult to control what happens at home. Is it your belief that putting teachers between the pressures of the classroom and the state government will inspire them to reach into themselves and somehow pull out consistent across-the-board success in spite of differences in demographics?
Will linking students’ test performances to a teacher’s continues employment be successful in producing consistent across-the-board success?
Is this all about union and tenure busting?
Are we at the point of scrapping compulsory public education?
Do schools spend too much?
Could you pick a school district at random and go over their budget with them to see how money is spent and make a more informed judgment about appropriate budget levels?
Will our schools continue to experience budget cuts every year? Can we expect this?
How do parents know when schools actually need to downsize because of fewer pupils and when they are just being forced to downsize because of political priorities or real gaps in budgets?
You seem to have some anger around schools and teachers. Could you express it more clearly, please? Use your words.
Why are you cutting our SUNY schools when they should be our pride and an important selling point for our state? These schools are excellent, yet they are constantly sustaining budget cuts. Is this because of real dollar shortages?
Again could we know how you prioritize various sections of the budget?
Are these cuts policy decisions?
Are there better ways to make cuts?
State schools used to specialize in different areas of study. Could we save money and promote excellence and keep costs low by returning to a system where all programs are offered, but not at all schools?
How low can faculty pay and hours go before personal survival outweighs the personal passion for excellence and good professors are lost to the private sector?
Can’t you convene a working group from throughout SUNY – give them the real dollars available and let SUNY self-right-size itself by deciding the most sensible arrangement of statewide offerings and student costs? There are, after all certain courses that must be offered on every campus and other courses where specialties could be unique to a particular campus.
Perhaps students could be admitted to the whole SUNY system and take their courses on any campus as convenient rather than attending only one campus or at least make credits accepted on one campus, acceptable on all SUNY campuses? I’m guessing only some students would find this option useful but it might help SUNY attract and retain students.
New Yorkers (and others)
Come up with your own list of questions or feel free to add to mine.
By Nancy Brisson
<a href=https://plus.google.com/10640005355488737390?=author>Nancy Brisson</a>