Thursday, March 3, 2011

Can You Hear the Ocean Through Those Shells?

Do you know about the Education Jobs Fund? It's one of those federal stimulus programs, and it came into being in August of last year. For California, it meant a hefty $1.2 billion "to be used to save or create an estimated 16,500 kindergarten through grade twelve (K–12) jobs."

Our school district apparently ended up with more than $1 million. How the funds can be spent is very specific. (You can see California's Department of Education's listing of the conditions here.) I'll save you the trouble of clicking over and reading by pulling out some relevant quotes:

"LEAs must use the funds at the school site..."

"Funds may not be used for: (1) administrative expenditures related to the operation of the superintendent’s office or the LEA’s board of education, including the salaries and benefits of LEA-level administrative employees; and (2) expenditures for fiscal services, LEA program planners and researchers, and human resource services."

In other words, you can only use the EJF monies specifically at the school level.

Do you know what our school district has done? It has used the EJF monies at the school site level.

And then it has taken money it would have spent at the school site level and saved positions at the district level.

I am trying not to lose it. I truly am. I am trying not to say the "f-word" so much.

But are you f#$king kidding me? At the same time they are doing this shell game, they are issuing pink slips to 24.8 FTEs (full-time equivalents), including 20.6 positions out of the classroom, out of the school site level.

Oh, I'm sure it's perfectly legal. Of course it is. But where's the morality?

I don't think you'll find it anywhere in this shell game. The school district powers-that-be are truly nothing more than better dressed street hustlers. And we're the ones walking up with "Easy Mark" stamped on our foreheads.

[P.S. In reading the local online news site, I see the CFO of the district quoted as saying, with regard to the cuts, "We’re about done with our shell game, too."]

[P.P.S. I know this is happening all around the country. Your tax money, your children's burden, your grandchildren's burden, feeding the machine that is the government.]

[P.P.P.S. I am beginning to think that I'd best attend the next Tea Party meeting.]


Tara R. said...

Sounds a little like a Ponzi Scheme... aren't those illegal?

Patois42 said...

Tara, not if you're the guvment.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's time for me to burn my BLUE card.


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