HASB should think about the community | News, Sports, Jobs
The most recent meeting of the Hollidaysburg School Board brought out the best and the worst in our community.
As students, teachers, and administrators face heightened concerns regarding safety, mental health, Covid, and the district faces a looming severe financial shortfall, several school board members would not support a vote for raise taxes or, as ridiculous as it sounds, an administration proposal to cut spending.
Much of the conversation at the meeting focused on the teachers defending their heroic work with the students, in what seemed like a bazaar fairy tale in which good and evil had switched places and those who helped children had to defend their work in one way or another against the bad guys.
As a result of this discussion, the Hollidaysburg Watchdog Group, which claims to have the community interest as its primary objective, orchestrated a plan to disrupt the education process by withholding tax increases needed to maintain school programs.
Hollidaysburg ranks in the top 25% of districts in the state and yet is taxed in the bottom 25% when it comes to supporting its school district.
Hollidaysburg does not support its school district at the same level as other districts in the state of Pennsylvania.
In the wake of this need to cut spending, the school administration had previously proposed a $1 million spending cut.
This proposal was rejected by the school board.
The community should support the schools to its capacity.
Council-level conversations should support and guide educators rather than promoting an undefined or even hidden political agenda.
If the objective is a balanced budget, the solution was immediately available.
A deficit is eliminated when revenues increase and expenses are reduced.
The majority of those present understood this and would have supported a proportional increase in taxes.
If the board wants to balance the budget, the reduction in spending must have been approved by the board.
Stuart J. Roberts