The news last week was that eight teaching positions would be cut and that the elementary schools would be doing away with PE classes. As I read the article, I started thinking about what "we" can do to prevent both the loss of the teaching positions and the loss of the PE classes.
Obviously, the school board knows more about the budget than I do, but one idea came quickly to mind. Forget about closing the high school campus. Closing the campus will cost about $20,000 to fence the campus and $65,000 for additional security (according to Phil Gille). That doesn't include the cost of maintaining a cafeteria to serve the entire high school student population. I don't recall any mention of what it would cost to have a cafeteria to serve the entire student body, but it won't run itself. There will have to be ample kitchen staff, which obviously will take money from the school district budget. Of course, there will be the cost of food, plates, silverware, glasses, adequate seating, and janitorial care of the cafeteria.
The vast majority of the high school students do not abuse the privilege of having an open campus, and do not need the campus to be closed. I have been to the high school campus daily for the past 5 years, before, during, and after school. I have seen kids who are well-behaved and respectful. I'm sure that there are those who do abuse the privilege of an open campus and lunch hour, but I'm also sure that there must be ways to deal with those students without punishing the majority. Closing the campus will not stop those students who want to smoke or otherwise abuse "substances". As soon as school is out for the day, the abuse will resume.
It seems obvious to me that the money that would be necessary to close and maintain a closed campus could be better used, at this time, to continue elementary PE classes and keep the eight teaching positions that are to be lost.
Susan Grubbs, Payson