Mouth That Roars

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself of National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the "MOUTH THAT ROARS" Column in the Sullivan County Post.

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May 15th, 2014

School Board Elections Tuesday

Sullivan County school districts will be holding school board elections next Tuesday. These elections often go unnoticed by the general public even though they have tremendous impact on how our children receive their education.

School Boards control every aspect in running our schools including hiring superintendants and other administrators. They set budgets that ultimately decide what we will pay in school taxes.

A small portion of a school budget is controlled by a district, while the State of New York mandates and sets certain requirements and criteria.

Despite all the state aid a school district might receive, taxpayer’s still need to foot the bill to balance budgets. This usually involves tax increases. And, depending upon the district you live in those increases and schools taxes vary.

On Tuesday, not only will we have the opportunity to elect members to the school board, but we will also have the opportunity to approve or disapprove these proposed budgets for our school districts.

School Boards are an important part of education across the country. They are the principal democratic body representing all the public in educational matters.

It should be noted that it is not a prerequisite for those sitting on a school board to have children attending public schools.

The big issues in all of our school districts in all likelihood revolve around educating our children while balancing budgets.

We need to do more to uniformly educate our youth, consolidate purchases, and find avenues to cut cost. Often our tax dollars go more towards administrative salaries, than to educate our youth.

There is something very wrong when our school districts are shelling out an average of $140,000 per year to pay superintendents and other administrators to run schools, while our teachers, elected officials, and other governmental bureaucrats earn salaries far less than that.

There is something very wrong when it depends where you live in Sullivan County what the class size, standards, or curriculum will entail.

Our school boards are responsible for hiring their superintendents, administrators, and budgeting items. The time has come for all of us to take an honest look at the educational system in Sullivan County.

Perhaps we need to have a centralized Board of Education.

This would allow for across the board curriculum and standards for all of our public schools in Sullivan County. Consolidation of purchasing and contractor services could also save taxpayers huge amounts of monies.

Although our County Legislators and other elected officials can take positions on our public schools in Sullivan County, they really have little say. The power lies with each local school district.

It would be nice if all school board candidates would advocate studying a centralized Board of Education for Sullivan County.

Perhaps we need to see a Sullivan County Schools Chancellor in place along with a Board of Education.

In any event, our school boards throughout Sullivan County must sit down and discuss alternatives to find ways to make our educational system work more effectively and efficiently.

We must all acknowledge that we need a new and increased direction when it comes to educating our youth. With illegal drug use, gangs, and lack of family structure all too rampant in Sullivan County, our schools unfortunately now have a heavier burden placed on them by society.

Those elected to school boards are hard working volunteers who are truly concerned about our children and their future. I have nothing but praise for those dedicated individuals.

Just like in any election, voter turnout will determine who gets elected. Please vote on Tuesday, and good luck to all the candidates.

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself on National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the “MOUTH THAT ROARS” Column in THE SULLIVAN COUNTY POST.

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