Dearest Governor Daniels,
I want to thank you for providing an ignorant judgement of your very own, Indiana Public Schools. Thank you for sharing your opinion that, “We have a lot of bad schools in Indiana at the current price. More money doesn’t make for better schools or we would have them by now.” I certainly hope that your noble career in politics has provided you enough first hand experience in education to form such a wise comment on something that you obviously have no idea what you're talking about.
Allow me to put forth some awesome examples on why money matters in education...
1. Imagine you have a meeting, Mr. Daniels in which you have an important task for your employees to perform, but your employees don't all have access to a computer at home or at work, because there aren't enough of them, AND lo and behold, you don't have any paper to make photo copies because there isn't any money to purchase it. Well, good luck figuring that one out because in your opinion, children don't need clear and concise directions. Perhaps if you knew children, had first hand experience with teaching them, you would know that students do need this. In fact, their parents are going to demand it, especially if their child has an IEP (Individualized Education Plan), which requires by law that their child have certain modifications to help their kiddo process information and be successful. It's a simple thing, paper, but it costs money. How will you help us do this under your opinion?
2. Scenerio #2: If you live in a fast growing district, like mine, you will notice that there are literally 30-35 students in a class, and your lack of allocating resources is causing our schools to balloon because there is no money to build new schools. Ergo, less resources (books, technology, oh, and paper), less staff to service our children, larger grading loads for teachers (I'm up to 190 students), which is not easy, by the way. This leads to teacher burn out. Honestly, I would like for you to teach for a week, a day, and let's see how energized you feel by Friday. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm probably the most annoyingly peppy teacher in my school, but we are all built differently. Let's see you be your most invigorating, inspiring, creative, and the almighty efficient under those conditions. Unless you have been a teacher, you have no idea. I'm sorry to say this, but it's true. And ya know what? It does come down to your dollars.
3. Last but not least, imagine your child's school with no incentive programs, after school activities, athletics, and transportation. I seriously doubt that you would consider sending your child to that school system because it's simply a crappy place to be. Well, because your dollars don't mean anything to education, in your opinion, this is what's happening all over your state. Good job. On the other hand, this probably doesn't mean anything to you personally if your child attends private school, which you can afford, I'm sure; at least it's an option for you. For most, it isn't, and yet doesn't every parent want the best they can give their child?
Governor Daniels, these are just three examples on why money is important to a quality education. So, from the front lines I'm telling you that your "studies" are flat out wrong. But in your defense, I will say that if I tried to do your job, I would not be very successful, because I'm not trained nor do I have the first hand experience. Therefore, please keep in mind that your politicians are not the experts in education.
Wife, Mother, and Educator
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