Friday, March 28, 2008

Question for "Yes" voters

Why are some Racine area schools able to quietly meet payroll, educate children, and maintain their buildings year after year while Racine Unified is never able to do so despite having a far larger per student budget?

Do "yes" voters ever consider such questions?


A different anon said...

I would then ask, why do these same schools you speak of seek out and recieve public subsidies? Then still nickel and dime parents to death every chance they get?

Do "no" voters consider these questions?

Denis Navratil said...

I noticed, ada, that you did not attempt to answer the question, thus proving my point that "yes" voters prefer not to bother addressing difficult questions, preferring instead to change the subject. But I will take a stab at your question if I understand it correctly. When you say "these same schools" seeking and receiving subsidies, I guess that you are referring to private schools. If so, I know of no private school that is seeking or receiving public subsidy, except for the busing of some students. Private schools may well nickel and dime parents as you say. I suspect most parents recognize the need for this, as private schools are entirely funded by private sources. There is no taxpayer for private schools to bleed.

Anonymous said...

D, It's called special education. Unified has to educate every child, regardless of situation. So if the child is severely mentally or physically disabled, they're still welcome into the school. A huge percentage of annual spending addresses these students ... the same students that private schools will not (cannot) accept.

Denis Navratil said...

Having worked as a school social worker in a school for special ed kids, anon, I am well aware that they cost more to educate. However, while this reality may be used to explain some of the financial pressures at RUSD, it is all too often used to explain away ALL of RUSD's financial failings. Also, there is a possibility that you are completely wrong as there has been an increase in categorizing children as special ed, which leads me to suspect that there may be financial incentives in doing so. Certainly there are excuse incentives in doing so. Are there really more handicapped kids these days than there were 20 years ago, or are some people making a fortune off of the increased numbers of special ed kids? It is an interesting question and I am certain that RUSD will get right on investigating the issue.

Randy said...

I am not a Yes voter, but would like address the question. One answer is central office. We still have the bloat of administrators administering administrators and each having multiple subordinates. There is so much excess within central office they can't afford spending elsewhere. Other district manage with fewer pencil pushers at the top.

Anonymous said...

"Also, there is a possibility that you are completely wrong as there has been an increase in categorizing children as special ed, which leads me to suspect that there may be financial incentives in doing so."

You are spot on Dennis. It's called State Special Education Categorical Aid.
Aidable costs may include, but are not limited to:
Salary/Fringe Benefits for:
Most Special Education Teachers and Assistants
Speech/Physical/Occupational Therapists
School Psychologists, Social Workers, Guidance Counselors, and Nurses
Special Education Administrative Staff
Special Transportation

I found out about this first hand. When filing open enrollment papers to get my kids out of failing RUSD, the process was dragging on. I was told RUSD must sign off to release, they were the holdup, and was asked if my kids were special ed. When I inquired why, the answer was "because the district receives extra financial aid and depending on the circumstances my not wish to release the student".
Eventually FUBAR RUSD did sign off and the best decision we ever made became reality. BTW, my kids are not Special ed.

anon 4:59
"the same students that private schools will not (cannot) accept."

That statement is a PURE LOAD OF CRAP

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...


At least 1 in 5 high school students is expected to be a special education student - an all-time high for the district

1 in 5 is severely mentally or physically disabled as anon 4:59 would have you believe?


Denis Navratil said...

Thanks anon for sharing your story and providing the links. I am not sure that I got a whole lot out of them, perhaps in part because I am lazy, but I think I might have gotten the jist of it, namely that schools are reimbursed for special ed services. As such, at the very least, special ed services would not contribute to the financial difficulties facing RUSD. And given the increases in special ed services, it is likely that some people are benefitting from this situation such as those providing the services and perhaps the school districts as well. So it seems that the squawking about the finacial hardship caused by increasing special ed costs is a lot of hot air. On a personal note, I am glad that your children are in a better school. If you ever want to share your story in greater detail, anonymously or otherwise, give me a call.

Anonymous said...

The scoiety in the US is disabled by the right wing leadership, and that disables the children.