A Response to Ms. Peltz

March 25, 2011

Dear Ms. Peltz, 

 

Thank you for your e-mail. It is clear where you stand on the issue concerning the referendum. As an educator and parent of two current students at Nicolet, I will respectfully disagree with you and enthusiastically support the referendum. We moved to this community because Nicolet's excellence clearly exceeded that of many other local communities and we wanted our kids to have the best public education possible. I have only lived in Glendale for six years but over that time, I have watched Nicolet and Glendale/River Hills continue to make cuts to teaching and administrative staff, ship 4th graders over to Glen Hills, do away with or dumb down "gifted" or accelerated reading and writing programs to "lowest common denominators," and reduce "elective" education (arts, music, theatre, physical education, and vital extra-curricular activities including sports) which are crucial to serving a well rounded approach to all the spheres of intelligence. As a college educator, I see what the dearth of these services renders in my incoming freshman's (nearly all products of public schools) poor writing and vocabulary skills, general lack of sophisticated cultural knowledge, and even poor physicality and posture. 

 

I will rigorously oppose any cuts to music, arts, physical education, and sports. They are no less necessary than math and science (and reading and articulate writing have even become secondary to these "goals"). Throughout their education here, my children have had the honor, privilege and opportunity to be taught by highly committed and talented teachers in band, orchestra, photography, graphic design, shop, and beyond as well as being coached in sports by excellently educated and trained faculty and seeing theatre and music events that even rival some college and community performances. I can not stomach the thought that these professionals will be the first on the chopping block as their "unnecessary" classes are cut. Some have been serving our community for decades and should be celebrated rather than penalized, marginalized, and at worst, fired. 

 

I find it interesting that my husband and I, both university educators, along with public school teachers who are quickly becoming the educated working poor (as of April 1, with our extra "contributions" to our benefits and after six years of consistent cuts, we will actually be at a 15% total cut in our take home earnings which we must accept but find outrageous for the amount of work we do. We also work through the summer teaching with little to no "time off" as per some arguments.), are willing to add whatever monthly tax increase expense is necessary to further our children's education with no argument whatsoever.  As teachers, we are getting poorer and yet we are willing to make more sacrifices so that Nicolet can operate only at its current functioning level and not even get "better" or restore important functions that have already been cut. 

 

I am not alone in my opinions. Many others feel this way too and on April 5th, we will vote our conscience. I pay taxes too, perhaps even at a higher percentage of my earnings than many people who are wealthier than I. We are being forced into sudden cuts in our family budget that are going to hurt. Because of the budget "repair," my children are already going to have less of what was already far from extravagant. What's $60 more dollars if their class sizes remain tolerable and their teachers are paid what they deserve, what they earn? I do not see the referendum as a "handout." I believe it is a necessary measure in this climate of extreme politicization of the educational field, educators and the educated. While there may need to be change towards efficient use of funding (which I support), it can not happen in huge, sudden and monolithic cuts that leave communities reeling when there really are many other options for fiscal responsibility other than cutting already questionably supported schools and their staffs.  I don't see any room for progress there. 

 

Respectfully, 

Elizabeth Johnson

 

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Suburban News Roundup

E-mail Newsletter

Your link to the biggest stories in the suburbs delivered Thursday mornings.


Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter
Get the Newsletter!

Login or Register to manage all your newsletter preferences.

Community Watch

» Meet and greet the Mequon-Thiensville School Board candidates Feb. 10 10:42 AM

» Video: DOT proposes 'Michigan left' intersection at Brown Deer, Green Bay roads Updated:  08:04 AM

» Young Brown Deer boys fearless in face of intense schedule 2/3

» Police situation closes I-43 ramp 2/3

» Area swim teams perform well at State Small Schools 2/3

» Master Greg Chay talks discipline, respect at new Mequon Chay's Tae Kwon Do location 2/3

» Glendale hotel could be flipped into apartment complex 2/3

» Revamped Chekouras tourney a tribute to late Homestead basketball coach 2/3

» Brown Deer boys basketball team knock off unbeaten Eisenhower 2/3

» Shorewood girls basketball team roars past Tosa West, keeps Woodland lead 2/3

» Homestead hockey team races to NSC title 2/3

» SPORTS SHORTS: Feb. 4 2/3

» North Shore Kids Expo connects families with activities 2/3

» Homestead girls basketball team beats Gerrmantown, tightens NSC 2/2

» County Board Chair Lipscomb claims 43 parks in danger of being sold 2/2

» Homestead High School threat suspect reportedly no longer in Mequon-Thiensville district 2/2

» Video: Shorewood will present 'American Idiot' musical based on Green Day album 2/1

» Updated rankings of area prep boys and girls basketball teams and players 2/1

» Positive and uplifting stories in suburban Milwaukee and Lake Country in January 2/1

» Rumage Around column: Classmates help bring more color to boy with color blindness Updated:  2/1

» Brown Deer hands Eisenhower first loss in 3 OTs, 102-99 1/30

» Gerhards Kitchen and Bath coming to Whitefish Bay Updated:  1/29

» Raw video: Driver runs over 36 parking meters in Whitefish Bay Updated:  1/29

» Suspect in fiery Brown Deer crash arrested in Cincinnati 1/28

» Nicolet basketball teams riding serious momentum 1/27

View All Posts Got a tip? Welcome rss

Advertisement

Advertisement

Local Business Directory

CONNECT    

Advertisement