Opinions

Wed
03
Aug

Cutting Gillett staff, programs is not the answer

To the editor:

A recent letter related to the Gillett School referendum spoke of “trimming the fat.” Our state trimmed the fat, cut off the muscle and severed the tendons. There is nothing left to cut but programs and staff, which would limit our children’s opportunities and enlarge our class sizes.

I don’t know how people could think that gambling with our children’s future, the value of our homes and the value of our businesses is ever a legitimate option.

Where does all the dissension with the School Board and administration come from?

The last time the Gillett School District asked for money was in the mid-1990s. Gillett seems to have been financially responsible compared to many neighboring districts and their multiple referendums.

Wed
03
Aug

Be safe playing Pokemon Go

To the editor:

Think safety first; that is our No. 1 priority at Oconto Electric Cooperative.

Pokemon Go, the new smartphone-based augmented reality game in which players try to catch Pokémon in real world places, is drawing players into some dangerous situations. Please be safe and stay away from substations and power lines at all times. Serious injury, or worse, is a likely result.

Katie Jagiello,

Communications and marketing specialist,

Oconto Electric Cooperative

Wed
03
Aug

Cut back on staffing in Gillett

To the editor:

I guess when you live inside the box of state funding, you get used to living a certain way. But when the gravy train stops coming in, you don’t know how to make changes that make a difference.

It has been said there is no other way. Well, let me help you.

I don’t know if you have lost a job. Usually what you do is you cut back. You might give up that Friday night fish. You may even have to sell your house or that new car.

Well, so to speak, you have lost your job. That money isn’t coming in. So, now Mr. School Board member, get rid of some teachers, maybe even get rid of two principals and have a superintendent/principal combined. Maybe you should even look at the director of pupil services. Maybe even some secretaries that we really don’t need.

I guess there just isn’t no other way. As far as us vs. them, those are your words. It’s your unwillingness to make cuts. It’s just trying to hold things together at home.

Wed
03
Aug

Gillett should consider options to reduce expenses

To the editor:

Some have said that those who oppose the referendum have not done their research or made phone calls to staff and board members, and that decisions have been made off of misinformation or hearsay. I can tell you for myself that I have made many phone calls. I have called board members, and there are some board members who have never returned my calls. I’ve called school staff. I’ve attended School Board meetings. I’ve made phone calls to DPI. I have done my research.

I’m not a hater of our children. I’m not a hater of our teachers and staff.

However, there are things that can be done before coming to the taxpayers and placing the burden on them. I receive phone calls and get stopped on a daily basis by taxpayers in our district who have said that this is too much. They cannot afford this. Without jobs in our community, there isn’t any income. Without income, there isn’t any extra money to pay out.

Wed
03
Aug

School revenue hasn’t kept pace with the times

To the editor:

In my opinion, the best investment we can make in the future of our community is the education of our children. Having a quality education prepares them for the challenges of our ever-changing world. It offers insights into what activities and careers interest them. This gives opportunities to prepare for employment that brings fulfillment. I would like to think there will be smart, fulfilled and compassionate people running the world of my future.

The Gillett community has a school whose students score above the state average. They have won awards of recognition with their performance. Our community should be proud and celebrate these achievements. I believe the hard work of the staff and administration we pay for the task of educating our youth has played a key role in this success. What enables us to have a quality staff and program is adequate funding.

Wed
03
Aug

Country music titles make me smile

When my folks stayed with us for a while after Hurricane Charley leveled their house in Port Charlotte, Florida, in 2004, we listened to some different types of music than we usually have on at our house. We usually listen to light classical stuff. They liked the Big Bands, songs of the ’30s and ’40s. So do we.

They also liked polkas, old-time waltzes, bluegrass and country-western music. I grew up in polka and old-time waltz country, so that was OK. But I haven’t ever listened to much country music. I discovered that I liked some of the stuff we listened to with my folks. Most of the country songs were light-hearted, and the polkas are definitely “happy” music; it’s almost impossible to avoid tapping a toe or moving to the beat when a polka is playing.

Wed
27
Jul

Teacher layoffs would help balance budget

To the editor:

A statement was made that we who are against the referendum don’t care about the children, and that if the referendum doesn’t go through, the school is going to shut down.

No. 1, we do care about the children. We care enough as to not use the children as a pawn as to this referendum. To you who are for the referendum and are using the children to try to get this referendum through, this just goes to show you don’t care about the retired people who are living on a fixed income. These people who are living on a fixed income do not get 88 percent of their insurance paid for. These retirees did not get half of their retirement paid for by us the taxpayers.

Why don’t you teachers pay 30-40 percent of your insurance like most of the hard working taxpayers of this district? Imagine how much money that would save the taxpayers.

It looks to me like you don’t care about these retired people who are on a fixed income.

Wed
27
Jul

Financial accountability lacking in Gillett

To the editor:

In a couple of weeks our school district is asking us to vote again on the referendum, and there seems to be a lot of animosity from some who support the referendum toward those who don’t. Before anyone gets overexcited, hear me out. This is why I can’t vote for the referendum.

Unfortunately, our community isn’t doing well financially. We have a large demographic of low/fixed incomes and no major industry. You can’t expect those who are already unable to afford to live, to pay more.

I can’t support the referendum when the district has proved that its unable to properly manage current funds. You can’t live on a bigger budget than your income. It’ll catch up with you. The district is asking us to give them money, in good faith that it’ll be more responsible than in the past. That would be great, except, due to the district’s irresponsibility, good faith is lacking.

Wed
27
Jul

Do what’s best for kids, vote yes to referendum

To the editor:

Residents of the Gillett School District, please join me in voting yes for the Gillett School District referendum on Aug. 9. A vote for the referendum will enable our school to continue to provide an excellent education for our students. A vote against the referendum is a vote against our students and community.

I am ashamed of the letters I see in the paper by individuals who are against the referendum; as a citizen of the community it is your responsibility to do your research about what ways the referendum money will be used. If you contact the members of the School Board and administration, they are willing to talk with you and show you what our school accomplishes for our students. We cannot base our votes off of hearsay and misinformation.

Wed
27
Jul

Show support for community: Vote yes in Gillett

To the editor:

The biggest task that a school board has is to manage the budget. Currently the Gillett School District is facing its biggest challenge, which is a subject near and dear to everyone: money. The state has changed the funding formula, severely impacting schools like ours in Gillett. Their solution: Go to referendum to survive.

No board member would choose a referendum if there was another option, but unfortunately there isn’t. Some community members would have you believe the referendum is to cover frivolous spending or new programs. Neither is correct. I can only speak for my time on the board, but over those years we have made some tough decisions in working to keep expenditures down.

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