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Monday, August 23, 2010

Cost of an Education

Ok -- so CA is one of the big states that is having MAJOR financial issues ... so much so that they are going to be handing out IOUs to their vendors .... partly because the state doesn't know how to stop spending when they don't have it, and partly because when they got hit hard by the job crisis they lost a lot of the tax revenue they had been counting on ....

but don't worry -- the city of LA is even MORE broke ... well it seems, they complain about how many of their students are from lower income ... how they can't afford to hire enough police ... how they have to lay off firefighters and other EMS people due to lack of funds ....

but they can spend
$578 MILLION on a new public school building
in a district where the drop-out rate is 1 out of 4 students (27% ... so really its every 3 students)
this makes it (a)the most expensive school ever in the US and (b) the most expensive school per graduate from it.
it is also the THIRD school to reach the multi-hundred millions in the last three years in that CITY alone .... two years ago they spend $232million for a single school, and $377Million for another last year (it had an orchestra pit, multiple auditoriums & atriums, dance studios, soft-oak floors, food courts w/pizza ovens)

this one is K-12 (for now) ... 4200 students

they bought the property of the old Ambassador hotel where Robert F Kennedy was shot & killed and named the building after him (hmmmm, you know CA's First Lady is a Kennedy by birth)'

it has a swimming pool ... fine art murals ... manicured public parks (not just patches of green grass anymore) ... uses large windows to cut down on energy costs from the use of artificial lighting ...

oh -- and the district has had to lay off about 3000 teachers over the last few years on the grounds of 'not having funds' to pay them.

the district is $640 million short for their budget

and their schools rank the LOWEST IN THE COUNTRY

So Fox News asked them for a response to this story ... here's what the LAUSD sent them:
"The construction of these schools was funded by bond money the voters approved to build new schools to relieve serous (sic, the district misspelled it) overcrowding in schools. By law, these funds could not be used to fund teacher salaries or to back fill budget shortfalls currently being experienced by the district and its meets (sic, more product of the LA school systems) the Board goal of relieving overcrowding in all our schools."

Los Angeles Unified School District

they say that the cost comes from keeping the schools up to code for earthquakes & the fees for the land usage, and -- and this this interesting -- they blame having to have to use Unionized labor to do it.

gee ...
wonder why they are having money issues???

We have a levy issue up this year as well, but it is worded very trickily ... it says that it will not only allow the school district to extend the levy out two more years, but allow the district now to apply for the state maximum whenever it sees fit too ....

basically giving the district a blank check ....

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