The following is reprinted from an anonymous post on The Ridgewood Blog 4/18/10:
...Unfortunately, some people don't seem to understand the implications of this vote.
First, a "NO" vote does not "send a message" to anyone. It does not have an impact on teachers benefits or their raises for next year. It simply means that the budget will get turned over to the Village Council (who know NOTHING about the school's needs or situations) to determine the amount of the tax for next year. They can assign ANY tax rate they want. They can increase the budget and raise taxes more, or they can cut the budget and limit the taxes. They are accountable to NO ONE on this issue. The most likely outcome is that they cut the budget more and reduce taxes, which will result in further teacher cuts...unfortunately, they will be the newer and more enthusiastic teachers, who most of us would prefer to have teaching our children. I, for one, do not want Annie Z or Keith K making any decisions about my children's education.
A "YES" vote simply preserves the budget that the BOE has presented with its existing cuts for next year. This does not send a message to anyone either. However, it ensures that the people, who are most knowledgeable about our school system, are making the decisions about how much and what to cut. This vote ensures guarantees that we do not cut any more teachers, that have already been proposed. While some of us would like to see some tenured teachers, who are in "coasting" mode lose their jobs, that will not happen, regardless of the voting results.
Note from Laurie:
This is basically the exact post I intended to write today, so thank you to "anonymous" for saving me some time. I have been so frustrated all weekend, whenever I heard someone say they want to vote "no" in order to teach the REA "a lesson." I just don't see the logic in that. And I've listened to enough comments from teachers to feel that for many of them, no matter how bad it gets, they're dug in for the long haul (or at least until the next contract negotiation).
Please vote YES on Tuesday. Polls are open from 7:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Results will be posted as soon as they are known.
Welcome to Laurie Goodman's blog. I use this space to share news and opinions about education and schools in Ridgewood, the state of New Jersey and the nation, in addition to other issues I'm personally interested in. I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, questions or opinions, too, by posting comments on any blog entry. Please observe basic courtesy -- keep your comments focused on issues, no personal attacks or bullying, please. Contact me directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org