Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Parents to launch campaign for support of referendum

The story at the end of this post appeared in the Northwest Herald and on the Students First Website. Parents who oppose this referendum must step up to the plate and start fighting this referendum now. The tactics that were used recently in Carepentersville-District 300, Huntely-District 158 and McHenry-District 15 will certainly be used to pass this referendum in Riley District 18. Ward states below "And we are being very aggressive." You can count on this. Expect literature to be sent home with your children threatening increased class sizes and program cuts, letters to the editors from teachers and their relatives, letters from children pleading emotionally for passage of the referendum, a door to door campaign by children who do not know better, announcements during school hours and encouragement from your child's teacher to encourage you to vote yes for this referendum. At the polls people from the school will check to see if you voted, if you have not voted expect a phone call on election day.

If this referendum truly had merit an "aggressive" push would not be needed. Passage of the referendum would occur on merit alone. Passage of the referendum will not ensure lower fees, reduced class sizes, improved educational outcomes but it will benefit the pocketbooks of the very people who educate your children. It will also ensure the same tactics and even larger tax burdens on your children when they are adults. Is that the kind of future you want to leave your children? Throwing more dollars at a corrupt system that refuses to spend only the revenues received ensures the perpetuation of the broken system.

We suggest parents read John Stossel's report titled Stupid in America

Three books we recommend include "Angry Parents, Failing Schools: What's Wrong With the Public Schools & What You Can Do About It" by Dr. Elaine McEwan, "Education Myths: What Special-Interest Groups Want You to Believe About Our Schools and Why it Isn't So" by Jay P. Greene, and "Cheating Our Kids: How Politics and Greed Ruin Education" by Joe Williams.

There is one or two things the voters of Marengo can count on, passage of this referendum without vocal parental opposition and excessive salary increases if this referendum passes.

Parents to launch campaign for support of referendum
By Brenda Schory

Northwest Herald

MARENGO - With barely two months to shape up a vote "yes" campaign for Riley School District 18, Lori Ward has high hopes that the public will support her cause.

"We have our committees organized. We're getting all our ducks in a row," said Ward, who co-chairs three committees and serves on a fourth. "We have about 10 weeks. And we are being very aggressive."

Riley school officials are asking voters for a 43-cent rate increase on the Nov. 7 ballot. The financially troubled district has a debt of $1 million, 40 percent of its $2.5 million operating budget.

More than program cuts or larger classrooms are at stake: State school officials warned the district that if it does not cut its spending or bring in more revenue, the state could take over running the district.

For Ward, who has one child who has graduated and another still in the one-school district, every effort counts.

"We want the public to be informed," Ward said.

"We're calling it the 'Save Our School' campaign. We're going to start pounding the pavement."

Ward co-chairs committees for printed information, canvassing neighborhoods, and telephone canvassing. She serves on the signs and public messages committee.

Board member Donna Wardzala said having parents take the lead instead of the school board might make all the difference in getting it passed.

Wardzala served as chairwoman of three previous referendum efforts, all of which failed.

"We did not have a parent group to go out and get the message out, and I think we have that now," Wardzala said.

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