Saturday, December 27, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Keep an eye open for wasted school resources

By
From page A9 | May 18, 2014 |

Education is a vital and noble cause that requires hearty investments of money and time.

Measuring the efficiency of the money poured into the “black box” that is our education system is a subjective but necessary metric. There are those who feel that “any dollar spent on education is a dollar well-spent,” but education performance does not necessarily rise with the education budget.

One notable example of this phenomenon is ongoing in New Jersey. The Newark school district, already equipped with a billion-dollar budget, has a 67 percent graduation rate. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, in conjunction with then-Mayor Cory Booker and Gov. Chris Christie, offered to donate $100 million of his wealth to the school district over five years, provided that matching funds were developed. This would provide $40 million a year to a needy school district.

Yet, after a few years of this resource infusion, the school district has nothing to show, other than a pile of invoices from a herd of consultants.

Locally, the same questionable allocation of resources afflicts our school districts. This week’s proposal to spend about $50,000 on a “recess consultant” triggered much backlash from the community and became the fodder for media outlets outside of our county. Who needs a consultant – just about every parent is a “recess consultant.” It ranks up there with a “bicycling consultant” or a “shoe tying consultant” in terms of frivolousness. Here’s my free consultant report concerning recess: “You have a field, you have assorted balls and you have things to climb on . . . go play.”

This request was fortunately dropped from the agenda, although I’m curious if it was due to a displeased mob reaching out to the elected school board or if common sense reared its head. I’d like to know some details behind this request, such as who suggested this $50,000 expenditure and did they have any relationship with the consultant agency? This expenditure is not an isolated occurrence. How much money is spent on junkets (sorry, “educational summits”) that always seem to take place at a resort of some sort?

If books, films and Internet sources are adequate to teach our children the basics, they should be more than enough to educate the adults.

Common sense cannot rest on its laurels. For every one of these unbelievable requests that gets shot down, another one squeaks through. The mentality still remains – people or groups think that piddling away scarce resources on consultants is a suitable use of education dollars. To flaunt or even consider expenditures like this while they investigate the need for more revenue through tax increases or bond measures shows how tone deaf the administrators of our school systems are.

Every time I hear of one of these very questionable expenditures, it is difficult for me to believe that there is a shortage of financial resources in our school system. Next time you hear tales of woe from this school district, along the lines of “we don’t have books and paper,” please remember they apparently had $50,000 to drop on a recess consultant.

If nonessential expenditures are not curtailed, we may be living the fable of “The administrator who cried wolf.”

Schooling is an interesting industry where the students are not only the customer, but also in many regards, the “product.” We entrust our most valuable asset to this industry, our children. Let’s get our resources to the front lines, where the teachers interact and inspire our children and keep the resources away from the back office administrators and consultants.

Brian Thiemer is chairman of the Solano County Libertarian Party. He can be reached at lpsolanocounty@gmail.com.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Recent Articles

  • Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • .

    Solano News

    Suisun Valley celebrates appellation’s anniversary

    By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

     
     
    Girl’s selfless act boosts Suisun Wildlife Center

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

    Beer for 1st butterfly of year challenge returns

    By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
     
    Fire damages Fairfield home

    By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

    Car rolls over on Highway 113

    By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

     
     
    Suisun City police log: Dec. 25, 2014

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

    Fairfield police log: Dec. 25, 2014

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

     
     
    .

    US / World

    California braces for first widespread frost

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

     
    California gears up for migrant driver’s licenses

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 7 Comments

    Inmate breaks out of jail through ventilation duct

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

     
    People slide down bedsheets to escape motel fire

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

    Court: LA Police Department policy for impounding cars is OK

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

     
    4 dead in fiery Northern California car crash

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

     
    Police officer shoots woman in leg in Hollywood

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 4 Comments

    Bodies of woman, 3 grandsons found in burned home

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    Truck crashes into home; 93-year-old resident dies

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

    Scientists target mess from Christmas tree needles

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

     
    Baby ostracized by other gorillas will switch zoos

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

    Thousands attend 8-hour wake for slain NYC officer

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

     
    Study: Marijuana use has increased in Colorado

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

    Dog not gone: Rescue in the Columbia Gorge

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

     
    Lawmakers promise to help strapped oil-patch towns

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

    Feline fame in cyberspace gives species a boost

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

     
    At 101, dedicated union rep is calling it quits

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

    Can GOP shatter ‘Obama coalition’ in 2016?

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 2 Comments

     
    GPS used to track some immigrants caught at border

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

    10th anniversary of tsunami is marked with tears

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

     
    .

    Opinion

    Sony hack is reminder of broader Sony dysfunction

    By William Pesek | From Page: A8

     
    A proud man, a good honorable man

    By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 30 Comments

     
    .

    Living

    Today in History: Dec. 27, 2014

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Community Calendar: Dec. 27, 2014

    By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

    Horoscopes: Dec. 27, 2014

    By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B5

     
    Remember, caregivers need some care attention, too

    By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B5

    Cow that fled slaughterhouse in 2006 has new home, again

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10

     
    .

    Entertainment

    TVGrid

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

     
    1990s TV star ‘Screech’ charged in bar stabbing

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

     
    Jazz great Buddy DeFranco dies at age 91

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

    .

    Sports

    Games to Remember from 2014

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Suns outlast Kings 115-106 for 5th straight win

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

     
    Anthony Davis, Roman meet over tweet

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

    Cleveland reaches 50 years of sports futility

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Arizona’s Lindley back at starter, Stanton has infection

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Prep JV boys basketball: Vanden gets win in Dixon tourney

    By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

     
    Could Watt be 1st NFL MVP from defense since Taylor in 1986?

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Dan Uggla joins Nationals for minor league deal

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Georgia’s Richt: RB Todd Gurley heading to NFL

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Slumping New Jersey Devils fire coach Pete DeBoer

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    No. 1 Kentucky, No. 4 Louisville resume rivalry

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Raiders rookie CB makes most of opportunity

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    High-scoring offenses create longer college games

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Anderson: post-game petulance was out of character

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

     
    Chiefs QB Alex Smith out with lacerated spleen

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Globetrotters’ Robert ‘Showboat’ Hall dies

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    NC State wins Bitcoin Bowl to cap turnaround year

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    Rutgers beats North Carolina in Quick Lane Bowl

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    La. Tech beats Illinois 35-18 in Heart of Dallas Bowl

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    This date in sports history for Saturday, Dec. 27, 2014

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

     
    Weather for Saturday, Dec. 27, 2014

    By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B11

     
    .

    Business

    In 2014, US economy began shaky, finished strong

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

     
    Holiday deliveries improve but hiccups continue

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

    Missouri 1st to see average gas price below $2

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B6, 1 Comment

     
    .

    Obituaries

    .

    Comics

    Baldo

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Get Fuzzy

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    Beetle Bailey

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    B.C.

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    Sally Forth

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Zits

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    For Better or Worse

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Pickles

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    Garfield

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Blondie

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    Baby Blues

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Peanuts

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    Rose is Rose

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Dilbert

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

    Wizard of Id

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

     
    Word Sleuth

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Crossword

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Cryptoquote

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    Sudoku

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

     
    Bridge

    By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

    .

    Home Seller 12/27/14

    Average US 30-year mortgage edges up slightly

    By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR2

    Real estate transactions for Dec. 27, 2014

    By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR2