Wednesday, June 19, 2013

School District is wasting money

    Think your cell phone bill is high? Try $3,670 a month—that’s how much we taxpayers pay to provide cell phones for Blaine County School District’s administrators, principals, social workers, counselors, technology and maintenance department employees. This expense has nothing to do with the education of our children—contributes nothing to their learning.  
    How about the repair of the door glass and window that was shot out at the high school this year?  Ten thousand dollars. Seems the windows and their frames, plus the security wiring that needed replacing explains the high cost.
    We spend $200,000 on ‘Security’ yearly now. Why didn’t the destruction of this security entrance wiring cause the police to be notified automatically, and internal alarms to go off all over the building?   
    How much are we paying for legal defense related to the McKinstry lawsuit? Our district spent more than $332,000 last month alone. This lawsuit began a year ago.
    One last shocking spending example: In one month our district paid more than $290,000 for communications and technology services (to Apple, Verizon, Integrated Technologies, Syringa Networks, Maestro Technology Solutions, CDS Government and Compunet).  Our network monthly service charge alone is $20,000.  
    Things like this are why we spend twice per student what other Idaho districts do, yet our performance is nowhere near the top, in spite of the claims of the district administration.  
    We can have a top-notch education system in our beautiful valley, but not the way we’re doing things right now. We need to spend our money on what improves student education, not on highly expensive, unproductive  extras.
    Blaine County parents and taxpayers are waking up. School transformation is afoot. Keep your eyes and ears posted.  
Pamela Plowman

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