Against Full-Day Kindergarten

The Common Core State Standards website asks, Q: Why do we need educational standards? A: We need standards to ensure that all students, no matter where they live, are prepared for success in postsecondary education and the workforce. Let’s assume for a moment that that is the goal of primary and secondary education. (Let’s also […]

On the Arlington Central School District Budget (2012-2013)

Arlington Central School District budget planning for FY 2012-2013 has resulted in a fairly good budget. I particularly like the appendices that are included for the first time in this year’s budget book. Budget creation is a bit of a balancing act. This year our district has done well in limiting the increase in costs […]

Comments on the Arlington Central School District Budget (2010-2011)

The Board of Education of the Arlington Central School District has made the difficult decision to close an elementary school in order to reduce the district’s budget.There are obviously consequences to this decision other than the money involved. Some are logistical, such as the effect on bus routes and the dispersion of the population to […]

Freeze Tag

As previously mentioned, the school district needs to trim about $18.5 million in order to avoid a tax increase. Poughkeepsie Journal on the most recent school board meeting contained some interesting trivia. [T]he school board is asking all its 1,500 employees to agree to a salary freeze next year. … District Superintendent Frank Pepe has […]

Are Guidance Counselors Superfluous?

The Arlington Central School District sends out a newsletter every now and again — oddly enough around budget season. This time it includes a piece titled “Arlington’s Investment Paying Off,” which discusses how additional guidance counselors have dropped the student to counselor ratio from 375:1 to 210:1. Now, three years into the plan, our commitment […]

The Powerlessness of the School District Budget Process

On Tuesday, voters defeated most of the proposed school district budgets in Dutchess County. The New York State Education Department, however, said that state-wide, most voters approved the school district budgets. Except that department only gives the approval in terms of a percentage of budgets passed: 88.9%. This leaves some unanswered questions. What was the […]