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BorgBlog
Take a peek over Jim Borgman's shoulder


Jim Borgman has been the Enquirer's editorial cartoonist since 1976. Borgman has won every major award in his field, including the 1991 Pulitzer Prize, the National Cartoonists Society's Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year in 1993, and most recently, the Adamson Award in 2005 as International Cartoonist of the Year. His award-winning daily comic strip Zits, co-created with Jerry Scott, chronicles the life of 15-year-old Jeremy Duncan, his family and friends through the glories and challenges of the teenage years. Since debuting in July 1997, Zits has regularly finished #1 in reader comics polls across America and is syndicated in more than 1300 newspapers around the world.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Money for Schools


40 Comments:

at 8/15/07, 1:51 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not that it is an excuse, but wasn't the whole "Buy War Bonds" movement doing just that? Maybe I watched "Flags of Our Fathers" too recently.

 
at 8/15/07, 2:57 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why do communities continue to put levies on ballots when they've not been successful in the past? Isn't that the definition of insanity?

 
at 8/15/07, 10:59 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

No. The definition of insanity is expecting children to perform well in school under conditions in which most sane people would refuse to work. You write your little tirades from air conditioned homes and offices, while our children try to learn and function in classroom where the temps exceed 100 degrees. Yet you have the nerve to tell us we're insane to ask the community to do better for our children? Maybe you're not insane -- maybe you're just heartless.

 
at 8/16/07, 3:36 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

maybe the schools can afford air conditioning if the school board members DON'T make 6 figure salaries. In most school districts, school board positions are part time jobs.

 
at 8/16/07, 7:57 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Timely from KY perspective! As we approach the legislative session in January, trying to figure out what to do with the mob-rule mentality among legislative districts / legislators is the big question.
While so many districts are making out like bandits, some districts, notably Boone County and other Northern Kentucky suburbs, are getting the short end of the funding stick from Frankfort. By law, Frankfort is to supply MOST funding on an equitable basis. The reality is that the "good ol' boys" fund their own and it is up to suburban voters, mostly in Northern Kentucky, to dig deep to pick up Frankfort's tab or else allow their schools and communities to decline. Litigation will be our only choice.
It is actually a worse problem in Ohio, where levies must be passed almost annually just to tread water. Why keep coming back to the voters? Because supporting public education as the means by which to achieve life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is an AMERICAN belief that goes back to revolutionary war times. It is who we are as Americans. Unfortunately, in Greater Cincinnati, we get the part about freedom of religion, (the right to pursue parochial education) but too many of us conveniently forget the part about educating ALL of our population so that we can hold on to this and all of our rights.
Consider that greater Cincinnati ranks roughly 24th in the size of our metro, but roughly 9th in the size of our parochial school system. Parochial education is a right, but without support of public education, it may end up as a lost privilege.
Seeking support of public education is not insanity. The failure of the legislature to adequately and equitably implement a funding system that eliminates the levy fiasco from the mix is the insane part.
By the way - As a public school board member in Northern Kentucky, I donate my time.

 
at 8/16/07, 8:20 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

School board members due not make six figure salaries. Members are paid $80 per meeting, and it is very much a part time job. http://www.smartvoter.org/2005/11/08/oh/hm/race/scib/

The answer to Jim's question is money. People don't make nearly as much money from books as they do from bombs. Eisenhower was right about the military industrial complex.

 
at 8/16/07, 8:31 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's an idea; instead of new cars, vacations, and big houses; invest your money in private school education. We make sacrifices so our children can attend a private school, while also supporting our local public schools; we also pay more in tuition than the urban schools because we support those schools as well. You have a choice, but how much are you willing to give up to exercise that choice?

 
at 8/16/07, 10:02 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Willingness to sacrifice in order to pursue your beliefs is also a cornerstone American value. With family members having sacrificed in support of those values going back to the American Revolution, I totally get that. Although I, personally, find the notion of parochial schools elitist and narrow minded, (you must be exactly like us or else you are scum) I am willing to support your right to be narrow minded. Personally, I would rather teach my children to exhibit character in the context of the real world than have them cloistered away in an ego-centric nunnery. We sacrifice to live in a better neighborhood with good schools, so I also get the "walk the walk" point of passing on luxury items / lifestyles to pursue the moral high road. We simply have different ideas of what constitutes morality.

 
at 8/16/07, 1:04 PM Anonymous Jacob said...

anon 10:59 - I don't know of any school that was air-conditioned when I grew up. We still were educated and became successful. While the heat is unpleasant, it's not intolerable. Plus, students aren't in school during the hottest time of the year, so it would be extremely rare for students to be in a 100 degree classroom.

anon 7:57 & 10:02 - Why so much hate towards parochial schools? Those people are paying taxes & tuitions. If that's their choice, so be it. I never got the "be like us or you're scum" feeling from any parochial families. I imagine there are some like that, but I haven't met any in my experience. The people usually just want a different educational experience, one that is grounded in their religious faith & moral beliefs. More power to 'em.

I think the biggest problem tax-payers have is that their taxes aren't spent intelligently or efficiently, and a large percentage does not go towards the kids. When janitors & librarians & administrators are making nearly 6 figure salaries, while the school hasn't received an upgrade in decades, taxpayers stop voting for levies. Simple as that.

 
at 8/16/07, 1:46 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would love to see an example of a school janitor or librarian making "near 6 figure salaries." Seriously, show it to us. Don't just shoot your mouth off. You will not find any janitor or librarian making that much in an Ohio public school.

 
at 8/16/07, 2:46 PM Anonymous jacob said...

Three Rivers School District. A year or two ago some of the bloated salaries were published in the Western Hills Press. I believe the librarian was making somewhere in the $80's and the "administrative" (i.e. sit around and do nothing) positions were easily in 6 figures.

None of the school buildings, athletic or theater facilities, etc. have received additions or upgrades in nearly 3 decades. They passed some levies during that time frame, but the students never saw any of the money. Now the population in the area is growing and they could really use another school, but the taxpayers are very hesitant to fatten the salaries of the already overpaid staff in that district.

 
at 8/16/07, 9:42 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Borgman hit the nail on the head. All other funding is better than the funding of our public schools! Schools are the backbone of our children, our society, and our future and no one wants to spend money on it. Ohio and many other states leave the future of our country in the hands of a vote even though we are not able to vote on any other price/expense increases. Yes, many are having trouble paying for schools through property taxes and it is time everyone lets our state & federal officials know it is time for change! It is a STATE (and Federal) FUNDING problem and has to be changed at the state level. It takes a great number of letters to Columbus to see that that change occurs. So start writing!! Thank you Mr. Borgman for putting it all in perspective and using your great insight and creativity to express the problem so well.
Everyone needs to stop blaming school districts and teachers for this state and federal funding problem.. The burden has been put on the school districts for a reason – so elected officials are not blamed. Ohio funds its schools with a percentage from state funds and then requires that the other percentage be funded through local property taxes (the % depends on how Ohio’s school funding formula effects each district). Thank you again to Mr. Borgman for bringing this state issue to light through your cartoon.

 
at 8/17/07, 12:08 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re the send them to private school idea: The single best indicator of the resale value of your home is the quality of your local schools. People who are too follish to fund their public schools end up spending much more money than they would have spent in taxes. Even the parents who vote against tax levies and use their "savings" to buy their kids private music lessons, private sports, private tutoring, becaus ethe school systems aren't offering these any more are spending way more. It's the SELFISHNESS principle.

 
at 8/20/07, 12:57 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

aren't we paying like millions/billions dollars a day for this war?

 
at 8/21/07, 1:29 PM Anonymous Joe said...

Noone has said much of anything about how districts like Mason, Loveland, Sycamore etc. have ton of money and thus nice stuff and school districts in Eastern Rural Ohio, some Ohio city areas, poor places in general; have way less money and yes this causes older buildings and facilities. But the real problem, not fixed by having/not having A/C is that they don't have the resources for AP Classes, extra curriculars, teachers with graduate degrees, the ability to send their teachers to school, breakfast and lunch every day, have students that can devote all of their time to school and not work, new books, lower violence/drug problems, and a laundry list of things. If school funding were to be appropriate, every student, in poor areas and rich areas would have similiar oppourtunities. But its all about money.

 
at 8/24/07, 12:49 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

maybe the schools should teach people how to be smarter

 
at 8/25/07, 12:14 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

what do administrators with iq's less than 50 do all day long?

 
at 8/25/07, 12:15 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

6 of 1, 1/2 dozen of the other: drug parties, long expensive vacations, prom dresses vs bombs and selling weapons overseas, both make america stronger

 
at 8/25/07, 12:18 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, the education system in Ohio does have its own racket now, praise the Lord! Every 4 years when the teaching certificates lapse, the teachers have to pay the state out of pocket for 9-13 semester of hours of more education to renew the certificate, at a cost of 5-10K; it could include basket weaving classes on line, but just make sure the state gets the money! it probably doesn't go back into the school system tho...need to do some more THINKING

 
at 8/25/07, 12:18 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

well, if the teachers weren't dumber than the students...

 
at 8/25/07, 3:37 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

if I could only clone myself and teach my kids at home and not waste their precious lives

 
at 8/26/07, 7:17 AM Anonymous Allen said...

Several things to respond to: Much of the public doesn't realize that the money schools have to spend comes from two or three sources (or types of levies) and are legally required to spend each type of money on specific things. So it is that a district asking repeatedly for money to pay for teaching and curriculum resources can "afford" to install new computer labs -- the technology money probably comes from a state grant that only allows it to be spent for hardware and software. Use it or lose it.

Administrators who do nothing but sit around all day? The writer(s) must be familiar with a building or the district within which I teach. Every principal with whom I'm familiar is on the go almost every minute. I've seen the principals in my building eating their lunches after the students have gone home for the day too many times to think they're not working during the day.

In the past ten years the cost of living has gone up something like 29%. In the past ten years the base salary in my district has gone up about 3.5%. Prices are up, health insurance is up, mandated retirement contributions are up ... sure prices are up for everyone, but a 3.5% raise in a decade? So I look around for a part-time teaching job as an adjunct at a local university that will help pay the bills, even though it will pull time and energy from my classes and from my family.

The (Ohio) lottery advertises that 100% of its profits go to education, but did you ever check to see how much that is for local districts? The last time I looked, the lottery contributed something like 5% of Ohio's state education money.

Find a new way to fund education? My, yes. Overdue. Oh, yeah. Any time soon? I'm not holding my breath.

 
at 8/26/07, 12:49 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

babysitters get babysitters pay

 
at 8/26/07, 12:51 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

gangs, aids, teachers marrying students...

 
at 8/26/07, 2:02 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

OUR school doesn't have drugs (or guns!); the drug money could fund any school program now being cut

 
at 8/26/07, 5:23 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

who needs reality tv when you can teach in an american public school?

 
at 8/26/07, 5:24 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

why not have all the high schools donate their used syringes to China, and the money they save can go to the preacher's kids' private education, the teacher's salaries and the ceo's multimillion dollar houses? (could probably fund all 3!)

 
at 8/26/07, 5:27 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

here's some math for high school students (most kids in america can count, either because of our great educational system or from sesame street): count how many products this year break down, ie, how many times you wait in an airport because of mechanical failure of an airplane, or have to change your rotors on your car at 17K miles, or whatever, then you can do higher level math, like statistics, from there, your very own statistics; count how much of your salary goes to ceos' crappy products, count how many ceo's go to jail, and count how much the stock changes; it'll be a fun exercise and easy math this year (mybe the school can work out some credits for ya!)

 
at 8/26/07, 6:54 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you remember your alphabet from sesame street, you could write your congresspeople letters, or the BBB, or the FFA, FDA, your attorneys general, the EEOC, etc. if you want to be part of the reality SOLUTION

 
at 8/27/07, 12:11 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

cost reduction means going behind the FAA's back and taking parts out of the commercial and military jet engines that were there when the engines were FAA certified; cost reduction means reducing performance on gas turbines; cost reduction means putting power turbines in the field that are catching fire; cost reduction means parts on gas turbines lasting 3 days in the field and blowing out millions of dollars worth of damage down the rest of the engine (great marketing stategies too!) - maybe we should learn from ceo's how to steal money for multimillion dollar houses and multiple mercedes

 
at 8/27/07, 12:17 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

fund schools like they fund big business; http://www.boston.com/news/globe/city_region/breaking_news/2007/08/firm_pleads_gui.html
Big Dig firm admits fraud as part of $50m settlement

 
at 8/27/07, 12:22 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Monday, August 27, 2007
Firm pleads guilty to fraud for supplying bad concrete for Big Dig
By Sean P. Murphy and Andrew Ryan, Globe Staff

A federal judge accepted a guilty plea today from Aggregate Industries NE Inc. for supplying 5,700 truckloads of substandard concrete on the Big Dig as part of a settlement in a fraud case that will cost the company $50 million.

Roberto Huet, president of Aggregate, the region's largest concrete supplier, stood in US District Court in Boston and agreed to the terms, which will help create an endowment to fund future repairs of the Big Dig. Judge Joseph L. Tauro asked Huet how the company would plead.

"Guilty," Huet said.

Fred M. Wyshak Jr., the federal prosecutor who headed the investigation, explained that "the policy of Aggregate was to provide concrete for the Big Dig that did not meet contract specifications."

"Leftover concrete on some occasions was mixed with new concrete and used on the Big Dig," Wyshak said in court. "On other occasions, entire truckloads of concrete rejected as too old or having too much water was used."

To hide the use of bad concrete, Aggregate officials falsified company records, writing up bogus batch tickets, Wyshak said.

Aggregate -- which was paid $105 million for its work on the Big Dig, including about $4.5 million for the substandard concrete -- agreed to pay $42 million to settle a civil investigation and $8 million in criminal fines.

US Attorney Michael J. Sullivan and Attorney General Martha Coakley have said they want $27 million of the settlement to be used as a first-of-its-kind endowment to pay for future maintenance and repairs on the long-troubled highway-and-tunnel project.

Posted by the Boston Globe City & Region Desk at 11:20 AM

 
at 8/27/07, 1:38 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

too bad we're not learning the same lesson Hitler didn't learn: life is more important then money

 
at 8/27/07, 2:08 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

these companies should be owned by the governement, especially the ones involving public safety

 
at 8/27/07, 2:09 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

personally, I find it impossible to teach kids on drugs, no matter how much they are paying me

 
at 8/27/07, 2:09 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jesus Christ is risen from the dead; too bad we don't act like it, that our focus is always death and drugs

 
at 8/27/07, 2:53 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

it's not weapons of mass destruction, it's the country of mass destruction (I wonder if Bush could find it)

 
at 8/27/07, 2:54 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

do you think bombs can kill aids?

 
at 8/27/07, 4:11 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.boston.com/news/specials/big_dig_problems/


Mass. crisis of confidence
With a Big Dig flaw now responsible for a death, state officials rushed to contain an unprecedented crisis of public confidence in the project. (Boston Globe, 7/12/06)

 
at 8/27/07, 4:27 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

you do have a point; at least the military can afford to buy bullet proof vests, helmets and guns to protect themselves; maybe some of the students can donate theirs to their fav teacher, teacher's pet kind of thing

 
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