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Money for Schools: Who Gets It?

Josie Duran, Author

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One of Santa Fe Public Schools’ core beliefs states, “A high quality education is a fundamental civil right of every child in our schools.”

But if the budget is lacking, can a high-quality education exist?

Most people maintain that a high-quality education isn’t just about the amount of math, science, English, or history students learn, no matter how important those subjects may be. Electives of all forms are also part a well-rounded education.

According to Principal Mr. Marano, this year the district cut budgets for all schools, which affects many areas, including the visual arts and performing arts departments. “The state allocates the money,” Mr. Marano said. “The district lost $1,000,000 this year; they even cut our budget by $200,000. Without cutting programs, we looked for a way to cut the budget for supplies.”

Some teachers are having a hard time making ends meet.

According to crafts teacher Ms.Gilman, the art department budget was reduced by 15 percent. Because of this, the art teachers need to split $6,000 among the three of them. Ms. Gilman also said, “This budget can only be used for consumed items that we use often, like paint or glue.”

Ms. Andrews stated, “I have twenty-five to thirty students in each class, and I might have to take an emergency allowance because of how many students there are.”

One art student stated, “I wish we could do more in our classes. It just makes everything more difficult. If there was a bigger budget, then we would be able to release our full amount of creativity.”

Choir teacher Ms. Barnes said that the reduced budget has made it harder for her to pay for transportation to competitions and performances. She said she receives about $4,000 to pay for all competitions. She also wishes she had a budget to buy new costumes. “We would love to change them, but there’s no money,” she said.

There was also no money to pay for an assistant choir teacher this year, so Ms. Barnes has to teach an extra class. She teaches five different choir classes and also travels to middle schools to teach. “I have a prep period only on Monday, and it is kind of killing me,” she said.

Choir students are also feeling the pinch.

Andy Borman stated, ”It’s awful because it affected us in a way that we can’t perform at certain places anymore.”

Dominic Lovato said, “We’re expressing ourselves and we want to take our performances further by showing people how amazing Santa Fe High is, and without a higher budget, we can’t do that.”

Although sports and other extracurricular activities hold fundraisers and have supporters, Mr. Marano stated, “Everyone competes for the same dollar. I think states need more money in school systems. I don’t think schools should have to do funding.”

Mr. Marano said he values the arts in education: “Creative teaching helps kids learn. We are definitely not funded as much as we need to be.”

Although the school and art departments may be looking toward a future increase in funding, Mr. Marano stated, “Because [state legislators] don’t like raising taxes, I don’t think next year we will get money until there’s a change in leadership. It’s hard enough to tell the priorities of the state.”

 

 

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Money for Schools: Who Gets It?”

  1. miles conway on October 3rd, 2017 7:27 pm

    Great article.

    [Reply]

  2. Kimberly Duran on October 17th, 2017 1:56 pm

    Well done! The quotes give the piece real substance. What is the next step towards helping the programs gain adequate funding?

    [Reply]

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The student news site of Santa Fe High School
Money for Schools: Who Gets It?