As a taxpayer I am not willing to spend money on a Taj Mahal approach to Newburyport’s Elementary School building needs, but I sure am willing and want, as a taxpayer, to make sure that our children at least have the basics with which to learn.
I found Superintendent’s Kevin Lyons report (Newburyport Daily News, December 19, 2006) to be professional, thoughtful and full of plain old Yankee common sense.
To quote from the article in the Newburyport Daily News by Nick Pinto:
“Programs at each school level are operating with outdated textbooks and curriculum materials or none at all, according to Lyons. In the elementary schools, the literacy program is 12 years old and makes it difficult for teachers to make use of modern advances in literacy education.
At the middle school, students and teachers are using an older and inferior edition of math textbooks and curriculum.
At the high school, German and Spanish classes have no textbooks or program materials at all.
Lyons also sounded an alarm on the district’s use of technology, once a pride of the system. Cuts in technology integration staff have made it harder for teachers to use new technology, slow connections discourage them from using the Internet and the high school’s computers will outlive their warranty this summer, just as many of them are beginning to fail.”
This is very bad news. And it is something that I as a taxpayer would very much like to remedy.
And I also appreciated this quote:
“Improve communication with parents and the community….”
Better communication with the community is vital for there to be support for our children’s education (not fancy buildings, education.)