Letter to the Editor

Let's consolidate for our kids' futures

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

To the Editor:

It is no surprise to anyone that we are in an economic recession; however, we are failing to act appropriately regarding our children's futures.

We read about budget shortfalls for local schools, and yet no real action is being taken to fix the problems.

I have a suggestion. We need to consolidate the school corporations of Putnam County. If we want to save money immediately and in the future, consolidation is the answer.

I am not suggesting consolidation of schools; I am merely suggesting consolidation of school corporations. We currently have four superintendents; I assume is each making upwards of $100,000 a year. Moving to one corporation would save $300,000 immediately.

Secondly, how much does it cost to operate each of the school corporation's facilities? We can achieve more saving here as well. I understand there are disadvantages to consolidation, but I personally believe that the advantages would far out way the disadvantages.

We could maximize teachers between schools. We could make the busing system more efficient. Summer programs could be consolidated at one central school. Consolidating also could possibly reduce the escalating medical insurance premiums.

Furthermore, we could eliminate administrative expenses. All of this could be accomplished without closing one school.

Sometimes it is hard to make change, but in the long run, the citizens of Putnam County would reap the benefits of a consolidated corporation. The process of consolidating would be hard work and would take dedication and cooperation of multiple school boards as well as involvement from local, as well as state, governments.

Our children's educations cannot be taken lightly and we need to make changes, so that our children can compete in a rapidly changing economy.

R. Max Hochstetler