LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Schools Don’t Have Paper, Toilet Paper

| March 3, 2015 | 0 Comments | Education

schoolbusOpinion Piece. This email was sent to the Prince William Board of County Supervisors, School Board members and local media outlets. 

Prince William Board of County Supervisors,

As you consider the county budget and tax rate, I want to share with you a recent conversation I had with my daughter, who is currently a student at Battlefield High School. She came to me and asked if she could open the new package of toilet paper that was in our hall closet. I said, “Of course, why are you even asking? If you need it, take it – you don’t have to ask for toilet paper.” Her response was,

“Well, I wasn’t sure. There is never any toilet paper in the bathrooms at school and we’re not supposed to ask for it.”    

This got me thinking about some assignments I’ve seen her bring home and letters to parents I’ve received from teachers about SOL testing, etc. It is so demanded of the teachers now to use less supplies that these full page assignments and letters are coming home shrunk down to, literally, a quarter sheet of paper. I wish I was exaggerating when I say that most of the type on these assignments and letters is less than a millimeter in height.

What do you think this really tells our kids? If you were them, and didn’t have such basics to rely on in school, would you really feel that you were getting a “World Class Education?” How could you possibly feel significant when you don’t merit even a half sheet of paper or some toilet paper?

For years now, fourth graders in PWC have not been allowed to take what used to be the standard field trip to Jamestown as part of their Virginia studies curriculum because of budget constraints.

This was the one and only “big” trip that all students got to experience during their time in PWC schools. It was such an important part of their education, and it’s such a shame that they no longer get to experience an incredible part of our state and national history.

Students are lucky if they get any field trip at all during the year. Ask any teacher how important field trips are to hands on learning and engaging students in their education and the world around them – they won’t hesitate to tell you that they are more than worth their expense.

I could go on and on with examples of what I’ve personally seen as just one parent. Students now miss out on, and how budget constraints have greatly affected their education and experiences.

Yes, fiscal responsibility is very important. But, there comes a point when enough squeezing is enough, and we are well past that point. Our School Board has to manage an ever growing student population with funding that is well below what other counties in the area get for educating their students.

If you keep restricting funding like this, soon test scores will begin slipping, dropout rates will creep up, teacher retention will falter, and you’ll wonder what happened to what used to be a great school system.

But the parents, students and teachers won’t be wondering – we will already know. Please, tax me at a higher rate if it all goes to our school system.  The kids in our county are worth every penny.

Thank you,

Amy Hurst

Just one of many fed up PWC parents.

This is an opinion piece. Bristow Beat, its staff, contributors nor sponsors, do not necessarily agree with the author.

© 2015, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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Category: Education

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