More Funds For More Opportunities [EDITORIAL]
FHSD desperately needs to pass the upcoming Prop Howell in order to prevent future cuts to educational resources
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On the Nov. 8 ballot, St. Charles County voters have the decision whether to support the new tax levy named Proposition Howell or not. FHSD first brought up the idea of the new tax levy after the previous proposition for a tax levy known as Prop Y failed back in August 2015.
This time, FHSD has been trying to get more information out to voters by sending home flyers, doing news stories and using social media to promote the passing of Proposition Howell. While Prop Y failed many have hopes that Proposition Howell will pass as it is only an additional 60-cents per $100 of property value compared to the previous tax levy proposition, Prop Y, which was planned to be raised 90-cents per $100 of property value, according to fhsdschools.org. This is something FHSD needs in order to give students an environment in which they can thrive.
Due to the failure of Prop Y, FHSD had to cut an additional $8.2 million out of the budget in the 2015-16 school year, cutting things such as some AP classes, tutoring and the purchase of new technology that would help students in the classroom. 36 full-time positions were also cut this year, increasing the size of the average classroom. Currently, 85 percent of the budget goes to salaries, causing the district to cut even more staff and freeze the salary for the staff. Passing this tax levy would prevent FHSD from cutting additional money out of the budget for this coming school year and solve the on-going budget problem. Cutting from the budget would also mean that the board of education would raise the question of whether or not to cut the current transportation to school that is available for students.
The district has been cutting from the budget since 2008. In the past two years, FHSD has had to make bigger cuts in order to keep schools running. If the tax levy doesn’t pass, programs created to help struggling learners will be cut more than they were in the previous school year. While a 60-cent levy won’t be enough for FHSD to create new programs, it will help prevent the district from cutting more. If the community votes against this tax levy FHSD will have to cut even more.
Proposition Howell is something that FHSD needs in order for the District to keep having programs that help students succeed.
By not passing Proposition Howell, students won’t be able to get the help that they need from school. The purpose of school is to help teach students information they will need in life and to create a better future for the world. However, if FHSD can’t find the money to fully fund itself then it will have to continue to cut programs that help students due to budget cuts, then schools won’t be doing the task they are supposed to do: preparing students for the future. If the tax levy doesn’t get passed then students can’t get the help they need, leaving them unprepared.
If Prop Howell doesn’t get passed then that would be the last tax levy FHSD would be able to put out for the next few years, creating a bigger budget problem than they currently have.