Reader: School district referendum vital for academic success
Letter to the editor
Our community as a whole is a great recruitment tool for families looking to relocate and support various businesses who call Marshfield home. Education is the core of our strong community.
No resident wants higher taxes or a bloated budget. Fortunately, with a passed referendum, we will experience neither.
First, Marshfield High School (MHS) made the list for two of Newsweek’s top high school rankings, which includes “America’s Top High Schools 2016.” We ranked 462 of 36,000, among the top 1 percent. Also, MHS topped the list of 20 area schools for ACT composite scores 2014-2015. MHS had an average score of 24.8, and the Wisconsin Valley average was 22.19.
If the referendum were to pass, the Marshfield School District would be spending $11,949 per student on average, and the state average is $13,031. If the referendum fails, our district would receive the third lowest revenue per member out of the 22 Valley schools. So, to say our schools are working efficiently would be accurate.
This referendum is an extension of our 2012 $2.5 million per year referendum with the district asking for an additional $500,000 per year over four years. The additional funds still fit within average or below average expenditures of comparative districts. The $25 per $100,000 of assessed property value per year will also be offset by the 2016-2017 budget.
There are significant items on the list to be cut should the referendum not pass: elimination of funding for the drama and musical club; increased class sizes due to staff reductions in science, social studies, math, and English; reduction in Advanced Placement offerings; elimination of driver’s education; elimination of the vocational education program with lowest enrollment; cut MHS athletic program with lowest enrollment; and Marshfield Middle School and MHS special instruction assistance (staffed tutor) eliminated. Why would we take a step back when things are working well the way they are and we are not overpaying, on average, for our community’s education?
I urge my fellow voters to continue their support of our successful school system on Nov. 8 so our kids can continue their path to a bright future.