I am one member of a five person board. The opinions I express on this forum are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Escambia County Staff, Administrators, Employees, or anyone else associated with Escambia County Florida. I am interested in establishing this blog as a means of additional transparency to the public, outreach to the community, and information dissemination to all who choose to look. Feedback is welcome, but because public participation is equally encouraged, appropriate language and decorum is mandatory.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Putting Students First in Detroit!

Over the last several months, teachers in the Detroit, Michigan Public School District have staged a series of "sick outs" that have closed dozens of schools.  Yesterday, in a mass sick-out, 60 schools were closed when more than 50% of each school's staff called in sick to work.

So what's going on there?  This district has been under state control for nearly 15 years, due to financial mismanagement and numerous other issues.

Academically, this district is the worst in the State of Michigan and the eighth grade students recently scored the lowest level in the nation in reading and mathematics.  This despite an expenditure of nearly $15,000.00 for each of DPS' 48,000 students. (Last year's budget was $721 Milllion)

The most recent financial releases peg DPS's debt at $3.5 Billion, with $1.7 Billion in short term debt

and the balance in long-term capital debt.

So where is the money being spent, where has all this money gone?  A part of that money expended was no-doubt federal funds, so why has there not been a federal investigation into this travesty?

The district is currently operating at a $221 Million dollar deficit for this school year.

According to reports, class sizes have ballooned to as many as 39 students in primary class grades, and many of the facilities are dangerous;  Mold, roaches, rats, and other hazards have been reported in schools throughout this district.

My question is simple, and I don't even live in Detroit:  How in the world can this district not be rescued, and why must the students suffer for the misdeeds of the "leadership" of this district over the last 15 years?

I feel sorry for the taxpayers in the other parts of the state that will most assuredly be taxed to fix this giant mess in Detroit.

I feel most sorry for the students that the unions and special interests are most assuredly not putting first as these pseudo-strikes are tacitly organized and endorsed by these adult-centric entities---leaving thousands of Detroit kids out of the classroom, losing valuable learning time.

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