Honey, They Shrunk The Kid’s School Aid
"I'm against anything that raises taxes," said Stewart Levine, 62, a Cherry Hill retiree who opposed the district's budget. "They asked for too much," said his wife, Sylvia, a 58-year-old executive.We wonder if these people realize that more is spent per pupil in New Jersey than in any other state, heck more than in any country in the world. No matter,it’s not enough for some.
But Karen Judge, 38, a Cherry Hill mother of two, described the district's budget as "money put to good use." "I voted for my children," said Judge, who took her two school-age youngsters to the polling place at Clara Barton Elementary School.
Continuing on. Here are a few questions we would like to ask the Karen Judge’s of the state. Why don’t you and the other parents get together and give the government the extra money you believe necessary to properly educate your children? Nothing is preventing you from giving the money if you so desire. Wouldn’t that be putting your money to good use?
We’ve probably given parents all over the state a great idea and soon the schools will be rolling in all the extra dough needed to provide a quality education to New Jersey’s children.
If that initiative doesn’t pan out, parents may want to consider this:
Superintendent Morton Sherman in Cherry Hill noted state aid, which was flat this year, now provides about 11.5 percent of the district's budget, down from 25 percent 15 years ago.New Jersey’s state budget has gone from $12.2 billion fifteen years ago to $27.4 billion this year. The state’s budget has more than doubled, yet state aid to Karen Judge’s school district has been cut by more than half. Gee, how did that happen?
The state is spending more than ever before on education; it’s just that the politicians have chosen not to spend it in Ms. Judge’s school district. As a matter of fact, they have chosen to allocate less money for her children’s education. Oh, and the Levine’s are feeling the pinch too, in much higher property taxes.
All of the Ms. Judge’s out there may want to take some time to understand the issues and then vote for representation in Trenton that will provide the leadership to end the aid disparity, even if it requires a constitutional amendment to take the courts out of the school budget loop. The Levine’s might also consider their situation come November – voters can bring about change.