$8.5 Million surplus? Let’s bring it to the parents…get their thoughts on whether it should be spent or applied to a later budget, if it is spent, what should it be spent on. An open discussion on what to do with this extra money. Right? Hardly:
…Almost 60 percent of LCPS elementary classrooms are already equipped with interactive white boards, creating a definite inequity in our system. 481 of the 838 boards that would be purchased with the surplus funds would be added to kindergarten, first, second, third, and fourth grade classrooms not currently equipped with this important teaching device.
“I cannot emphasize enough the value of this teaching device in our 21st century classrooms and the inequity that is created for some of our students and teachers when (the boards) are absent,” Hatrick wrote in a message to the School Board.“ Parents and schools have realized this need to the extent that PTA’s are trying to purchase a few interactive white boards… to bring their schools up to parity. Principals are ecstatic about this recommendation and tell me that their parents will be also…
“I realize that there has been some negative discussion at times fromofficials outside the school system about funding for interactive white boards, but we are beyond that discussion in our instructional program. With all middle and high school installations complete and 60 percent of…elementary classrooms equipped, those without interactive white boards are at a definite disadvantage for accessing instructional materials…
“We have an opportunity to use end-of-year funds judiciously.”
So in other words…we want the parent’s input, but we’ve pretty much decided we’re going to spend the entire $8 million dollars on interactive whiteboards, and we’ve sent this out to as many people as we can who will support that supposition, and are pretty serious about leaving the taxpayer discussion out of it.
This is further evidence of how little control the taxpayers have on how funds are spent in the LCPS.