2011 Legislative Update on School Reform
At the school board meeting on Thursday, February 17, 2011, the Board of School Trustees passed two resolutions (attached) regarding pending legislation that is happening with Indiana lawmakers right now. The bills at hand have huge financial implications on local public schools. Public education cannot function effectively when millions of dollars have been cut from the school budgets. Pending bills propose funding be diverted to Charter Schools (who have no significant track record of success) and in the form of private school vouchers. It is important to be informed and consider if the proposed bills are what you want for your community.
Please contact your State Representativeand let them know that you OPPOSE House Bill 1003; the School Voucher Bill. House Bill 1003 will be voted on within the next three days, so your action is needed right away. If House Bill 1003 passes, it will decrease funding to traditional public schools for over 1.1 million public school students and divert those public tax dollars to help pay for about 20,000 students’ PRIVATE or PAROCHIAL school tuition. This type of education reform does not help all students, but rather undermines the quality of public education available for all children. It does not take many students using vouchers to have a significant impact on one school district. For example, using the statewide funding average, if just 150 students use vouchers, that results in more than $1 million less funding for one single public school district alone. Vouchers will reduce funding available for public education. Our legislature needs to hear from you that you believe private school tuition should not be paid for 20,000 students at the expense of one million public school students. Please follow the steps below to let your voice be heard and help us SAVE OUR SCHOOLS!
•Call the Indiana House of Representatives switchboard at 1-800-382-9842 or (317) 232-9600. (Open M-F 8:15 – 4:45)
•Tell the operator you are calling about HB 1003.
•Give the operator your name and address. (This will allow them to look up which State Representative represents your home, if you do not know, who should receive your message).
•Tell the operator you OPPOSE House Bill 1003 and you want your Representative to vote NO on HB 1003.
We are hopeful that if enough people call, our State Representatives will vote against HB 1003. Thank you for your consideration and your quick action in contacting our State Representatives immediately. If this bill passes, please contact our State Senators who will be voting next.
Peggy Buffington, Ph.D.Superintendent of Schools