The cost of maintaining a high quality school system is not as much as you might think.Lake George tax payers pay nearly the least school taxes, on average, of all surrounding communities.
In these challenging times, students need to be supported by more than NYS and Federal funding, in order to enable an enhanced curriculum.
The school administration is working to reduce costs wherever possible, but too many cuts lead to a decline in the quality of the entire school system.
Last year the district failed to pass two budget increases, which ended up saving the tax payers very little money. Students faced cuts in extra-curricular activity as a result.
Coming off of a contingency budget, the district is already behind in their ability to keep up with increasing costs of state mandated programs and an organized teachers union. The only portion of the budget that the school district has complete control over are extra-curricular courses, programs, activities (this includes art, music and sports), and teacher/staff positions. These areas are likely to be the first to be cut if this year’s budget isn’t passed.
A few of the cuts made last year include: a 20% cut in classroom supplies, a 40% cut in athletic equipment, reduced field trips, and the elimination of a PE position, several teaching assistants, the school musical, modified athletics, the Jump Start Summer Enrichment Program, and more than a half dozen after school clubs.
If the quality of education isn’t maintained, families simply won’t want to live in the area. Property values will decline, and future students won’t have the same advantages as past graduates.
If you’re over the age of 18 and live in the Lake George School District, you should head to the polls on May 15 (Lake George Elementary School, 10am – 8pm) and Vote Yes for Lake George. Remember, it won’t cost you much, but could end up costing the students everything.