I just spent some time with one of my area Legislative groups about bills in our state and education concerns. First, I am always impressed with the quality of people in our public education system. One was a teacher, one was a financial secretary, and one was a principal. The passion that these three people have for our children and their education is admirable. I truly enjoyed our conversations. And for the record, our public legislator did not make an appearance at our scheduled meeting. That said, I am always a little sad when I am done with meetings like these.
Our state is already streamlined with education funding and we are cutting $260 million in the 2011 fiscal year. The funding cuts effect the classroom in so many ways. The cuts affect our children directly and ultimately the health and future of our country. I am venting now: If I hear one more time that "Parents need to feel the pain", I am going to stand on the tallest soapbox I can find and have my say. What part of the cuts don't the parents feel? Why is it that some teachers, administrators, and leaders in our education system feel that it is necessary to damage the efforts of the necessary team that is the Public Education System and Parents? If we continue to insult and pressure one another, we do more damage than the budget cuts.
Our collective support for each other will get us through the toughest of budget cuts. There is so much work to do in strengthing community and becoming a strong net for the children and their education. I do get that the loudest voice is almost always the negative feedback. And the most frequent calls a district will receive are the complaints. But don't forget about the hundreds and hundreds of thousands of parents in public education that give and give and give and support public education! These are our children too and we care about our teachers as well as the staff that make our schools operate.
I would like to extend an invitation to all parents to stand up and take a look around at what is happening with our education system in Colorado. There are so many people fighting for our children's right to a good education. Join them. Become involved in any way that you can. Get involved with your local PTA or other parent groups. We will have to be a team as parents, teachers, community, and schools to get through the cuts that are coming.