Jump to content

Menu

How much does public school cost our hs'ing family?


Recommended Posts

You do realize those per pupil allotments are averages. The majority of students cost a lot less. However, there are

 

students that get speech once a week

students that have a few periods of sp ed remediation a week

students in reading recovery or other remedial non sp ed programs

students in full day sp ed programs

students in full day sp ed programs at sp ed facilities

students in therapeutic boarding schools

students who have specialized nursing assistance during the school day at regular schools

students who attend STEM magnets (lab equipment and higher salaries) if the district offers

students who attend arts magnets (specialized facilities and staff) if the district offers

students who participate in specialized trade programs at the high school level

 

and more

 

again the vast majority of students are regular kids who do not get sp ed services and do not take advantage of any special programs. The majority of students cost significantly less than the per pupil allotment.

 

Exactly!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 122
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

I think it's harder to swallow for homeschoolers because we know that it doesn't cost anywhere close to $10,000 per year (average quoted by other poster) to adequately teach a child.

 

Our county actually spends $15,000 per child per year. Yes, I realize there must be capital and administrative expenses, but that total is ridiculous. My school tax bill last year was almost $10,000 (we have 2 houses). That's insane in itself, yet it wasn't even enough to educate even ONE child.

 

:glare:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think it's harder to swallow for homeschoolers because we know that it doesn't cost anywhere close to $10,000 per year (average quoted by other poster) to adequately teach a child.

 

Our county actually spends $15,000 per child per year. Yes, I realize there must be capital and administrative expenses, but that total is ridiculous. My school tax bill last year was almost $10,000 (we have 2 houses). That's insane in itself, yet it wasn't even enough to educate even ONE child.

 

:glare:

 

Are you factoring in the cost of the homeschooling parent's labor? I have to think that the vast majority of homeschooling parents spend far more than $10,000 per child per year when you include the parent's time. And surely the bulk of the school budget must be, again, the cost of labor, no?

Edited by JennyD
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Are you factoring in the cost of the homeschooling parent's labor? I have to think that the vast majority of homeschooling parents spend far more than $10,000 per child per year when you include the parent's time. And surely the bulk of the school budget must be, again, labor, no?

 

 

 

Of course not. Buildings, insurance, and other costs were not included, which means a comparison is immediately invalid even before we start working in the cost of special services.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The childless pay once. We pay into publuc school AND have to pay for our kid to be educated separately. Same with private schoolers. How abt if you are paying otherwise for elementary and hs, you are exempt.

 

Edit...ph doesn't allow me to fix mispellings...grrrr

 

So the childless are supposed to pay and receive nothing (other than general societal benefits), yet because you have a child getting an education elsewhere you get a full refund on your taxes?

Well that makes no sense.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you think ANYONE would choose to pay for public schools if they didn't absolutely have to? Do you think this world would be a better place if children and people in general had less education and supervision?

 

There are many things that I pay for that I don't always agree with. It is part of living in a society where other people have made decisions about how much money goes to the government and where it goes. If you really don't agree with how the schools in your area are run, then you need to be out there voting for school board positions (if they're elected), running for one of those school board positions, and educating yourself about where the money goes.

 

I think it is also necessary to realize that some people, some parents just DO NOT CARE. They don't care if their children are fed, they don't care if their children are nice, they don't care if their children are able to read. This doesn't mean that their children are better off without public school, most likely it helps them a lot, though not all of them. But school systems have to contend with those children and parents also.

 

Oh you only read part of the thread. Sorry. Go back and read the rest. I do vote.

 

ETA: I meant read what ELSE I posted. Of course I'm not against public education. But sh*ty schools are getting too much money and have crappy output. THAT needs to stop.

Edited by Moderator
Removed gratuitous rudeness.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So the childless are supposed to pay and receive nothing (other than general societal benefits), yet because you have a child getting an education elsewhere you get a full refund on your taxes?

Well that makes no sense.

Actually it does, in the sense that hsing parents are basically paying twice.

 

Which is why I suggested that there be income tax deductions available for what is spent on hsing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually it does, in the sense that hsing parents are basically paying twice.

 

Which is why I suggested that there be income tax deductions available for what is spent on hsing.

 

No, it doesn't. Property taxes are not a tuition bill and cannot be treated as such. A childless couple and a homeschooling parent receive the same societal benefit from their property taxes. It is similar to someone who hires private security for their property. They shouldn't expect a tax deduction because they are choosing to spend money for protection outside of police services.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, it doesn't. Property taxes are not a tuition bill and cannot be treated as such. A childless couple and a homeschooling parent receive the same societal benefit from their property taxes. It is similar to someone who hires private security for their property. They shouldn't expect a tax deduction because they are choosing to spend money for protection outside of police services.

I totally agree.

 

 

 

The schools where I live are very good (well, the elementary schools anyway) but I still CHOOSE to homeschool because I think I can do better.:tongue_smilie:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I

Our county actually spends $15,000 per child per year. Yes, I realize there must be capital and administrative expenses, but that total is ridiculous. My school tax bill last year was almost $10,000 (we have 2 houses). That's insane in itself, yet it wasn't even enough to educate even ONE child.

 

:glare:

 

Again, per pupil spending is an average of what it costs to educate each child. Some children cost significantly more. Most cost significantly less.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the state needs to put special education in its own state wide district. THat would eliminate a lot of cost that is coming from duplication of services and admin, and allow the medical expenses to be seperated from the actual education expenses.

 

Under the current setup, it is cheaper for the district to buy a family a home near their sped provider of choice and pay their property taxes than the current setup of the family finding the cheapest housing available within a 100 miles of that provider and the district bussing that child each way every day. This may sound petty, but when you look at the cost of each of these kind of bus routes (it's a $100k for the normal school year plus whatever for the summer even with the driver and aide being paid less than $15/hr) and the number of specialists involved in the day placements, you realize why sped is between 40 and 50% of the school budget and gen ed classes have 40 students.

 

A gen ed student is less than $8k per year here. Sped is $23k, and we are representative of NY state in that category. The 47k for a prisoner is less than what a group home or a nursing home costs, per resident.

 

 

A very simple answer which doesn't consider what it's really like to deal with these issues for the district or the individual.

 

Make a family move? What about jobs for the parents? Are there other kids in the family? People with disabilities should have their own ghetto maybe? Hmmm...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...

We pay very little property tax, which might explain why our schools are so bad and they are cutting school jobs due to no money...

 

We pay a ridiculous amount in property taxes, because we pay mello roos in our development. They continue to raise our taxes because they cry and moan that our schools need even more money than the loads that we continue to send to them, and they continually cut jobs, yet the public schools in our area are pretty bottom-of-the-barrel. I always vote against initiatives to raise our taxes in order to allocate more money to the schools, because we're already paying too much IMO, they can't seem to use their resources well as it is, and frankly I don't plan to ever use them so I don't care to support them anymore than we already do. I accept that as citizens we must pay taxes and that a percentage of tax money will go to the schools, but what has been very clear is that more money does not equal better...it just leads to them asking for more money. (Our taxes are continually raised regardless of how I vote, so they continually get more money anyway - but it's always nice to try... :p)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is really important to recognize that you pay not only at the local level, but via state taxes (sales, income...) and federal taxes. Given that Federal Taxes alone can be up to 10% of a given schools available funds, it is a significant amount.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It makes me so crazy that they spend a zillion dollars per kid in our district and then beg for donations for basic school supplies like paper. Where is all of that money going??!! How is it the Super gets six figures, but they can't afford paper?!

 

When I taught, I was given $25 to run my classroom. I was required to buy two different gradebooks with that money which cost around $15. So I had, give or take a few dollars, $10 for classroom supplies. Also, as a new teacher, I came into a completely empty room. Other teachers cleaned me out before I got there. I had no stapler, no chalk, no pens, pencils, no erasers, no scissors. I taught high school, so it wasn't like I needed 25 child-sized scissors, but there are basic supplies that most teachers need at some point. I spent $500 of my own money the first year (some of that was paint because I painted my room).

 

My room was so cold in the winter that I taught in a coat and gloves. I had no air condiitioning at all, so it was often in the 90's the first two weeks of school.

 

I still think too much money is being thrown at the schools. I strongly feel that the money was misallocated at my school.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In my perfect world, those of us who live in school districts that are failing by their own standards, especially those districts where the vast majority of the population are too poor to afford private schools, it would be really nice if they'd let us keep our school property tax money just during the years we have to educate our own kids at home.

 

I'm happy to pay for failing schools for the rest of my natural life, just because I don't know where all these kids would go all day without the government day care, but just for these 20 years I need the money for my own kids' education. No sane person would argue that if I can't afford to homeschool there is a perfectly good ps option. Not here.

 

If the schools succeed, even by their own watered-down standards, a case can be made that nobody has to homeschool. But when the schools fail, why must I divert funds toward them when it's a financial hardship to educate my own?

 

 

 

I agree here. I've had the local PS sit across from me at a table and essentially tell me that they don't have to accommodate my child's GT or SID needs-that she'll just have to sink or swim in a regular classroom because she doesn't have a classified disability that qualifies for a 504, and GT IEPs aren't binding in the same sense that special ed ones are. So, if they are able to have a GT teacher at her school, she'd get services, but if not, well, too bad kid! (And meanwhile, there are other districts, in the same state, that have full-day self-contained GT programs).

 

To get the idea, when I contacted Belin-Blank (the GT research program at the University of Iowa) last year, the response during DD's intake was "OH, you're in XXXXX! Good thing you homeschool!!"

 

And there are some wonderful opportunities out there that would be great for DD. I got one for a math class that she'd love. And the tuition we could swing. But we'd have to get to the class location and stay there 2 weeks. I do have a friend there, but I doubt she'd want us moving in THAT long!. The cost for that summer class, if we pay for a hotel for 2 weeks, will rival what I paid for a semester of college. I can't afford it.

 

I don't feel like I'm doing a bad job, exactly-but if they'd give me even half of what the local schools are getting from us back, I could do so much more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My daughter's McKay scholarship (for Special needs kids in FL) value was $7500/yr, she was in fully self-contained classes, special transportation, language therapy one hour a week. That was based on her matrix from her IEP

 

We would have used it had there been a school near us that was worth putting her in - I couldn't commit to a 40 minute commute without help from the ex. That school was a true special needs school, not a catch-all for discipline issues. We pulled her out of the middle school and she is back at home. It would be nice if I could have had a portion of that funding to buy her stuff to homeschool - I would even have done it thru the county. Alas, that wasn't an option.

 

Our tax portion to the schools is about $700 I think. I live in an area where the majority of the people paying property taxes do NOT have kids in the school - retirement community. Our local elementary school is "ok". My youngest is still there and I'm not happy with a lot of things this year in 2nd grade - academically she is pretty stagnant and would be better off back at home. The middle school was a horrid experience.... and my teenager won't even consider the high school!

 

So in my case, I know I am saving the school district money having her here at home......

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The school portion of the property tax is on the tax statement. However, if you're renting, this won't help much. Also, the schools get funding from other sources as well (like the federal government) that we're paying for in some way.

 

However, unless a person has lots of children in the public schools, the amount an individual family spends for public school is far less than the amount that is spent for their children to attend those schools.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

According to the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office:

 

 

It costs an average of about $47,000 per year to incarcerate an inmate in prison in California.

 

 

Food for thought.

 

 

Bill

 

 

This is a good point, however, I'd also like to add the other side of the coin: a lot of damage is done IN schools. Kids who can't keep up with the average fall through the cracks, etc. We hear about students who commit suicide every year, and find out they are being bullied daily in public school.

 

I believe illiteracy is a factor for future incarceration, isn't it? Our literacy rate is not nearly as high as it should be when our country is spending an average of 10K per public schooled child.

 

As for special services, my sister is a speech therapist for her school district. She spends more time called in for legal issues (parents suing the district, etc) than she actually spends with children who need her services. This is so wasteful, in my opinion.

 

And let's not forget that the children who do thrive in public schools are often those with access to programs that help them thrive, outside of school hours. The parents in our area pay for private math classes after school because their children are not receiving adequate instruction in a class with 33 kids. Most are also in private reading/writing clubs as well (paid for).

 

So lots of parents are "paying twice", essentially, if they can. I don't see this as a homeschooling is sure, but I do see it as a problem. We are all throwing good money after bad to a system that is broken. And the OP is right to want to know how much $$ we are throwing at this system. It's shocking, really. 10K per student per year? That's a lot of money. We are all well-aware of the how much $$ it takes to offer our children a quality education, and most of us don't come near that figure.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

 

This is a good point, however, I'd also like to add the other side of the coin: a lot of damage is done IN schools. Kids who can't keep up with the average fall through the cracks, etc. We hear about students who commit suicide every year, and find out they are being bullied daily in public school.

 

I believe illiteracy is a factor for future incarceration, isn't it? Our literacy rate is not nearly as high as it should be when our country is spending an average of 10K per public schooled child.

 

As for special services, my sister is a speech therapist for her school district. She spends more time called in for legal issues (parents suing the district, etc) than she actually spends with children who need her services. This is so wasteful, in my opinion.

 

And let's not forget that the children who do thrive in public schools are often those with access to programs that help them thrive, outside of school hours. The parents in our area pay for private math classes after school because their children are not receiving adequate instruction in a class with 33 kids. Most are also in private reading/writing clubs as well (paid for).

 

So lots of parents are "paying twice", essentially, if they can. I don't see this as a homeschooling is sure, but I do see it as a problem. We are all throwing good money after bad to a system that is broken. And the OP is right to want to know how much $$ we are throwing at this system. It's shocking, really. 10K per student per year? That's a lot of money. We are all well-aware of the how much $$ it takes to offer our children a quality education, and most of us don't come near that figure.

 

 

Most homeschoolers are not figuring in the "opportunity cost" of a parent not working into the real cost of homeschooling. You might say you only spend $800 on materials a year, but it neglects the labor costs and opportunity cost of being out of the labor market. That is basic economics.

 

I get that many people place a higher value on being home with their children than they do on the salary they might earn were they working. But it is a "cost." And one that is more than $10k per year.

 

Bill

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We spend $1000 to educate our 4 children at home.

 

Does that include the cost of the square footage of your house that is used for homeschooling? (livingroom, kitchen (table), kids' bedrooms, bathrooms, and yard)

 

Does that include the heat and air conditioning and electricity to maintain that percent of your home?

 

Does that include 45c/mile for all educational transportation to the library, zoo, science center, nature center, coop, Grand Canyon, and the Lincoln Memorial?

 

Does that include music lessons or gym/sports?

 

Does that include a sewing machine and kitchen resources (home ec)? "Shop" is pricey, too, if your kids learn to do woodworking, or to change a tire or the oil in the car.

 

Does that include library fines?

 

Does that include birthday gifts that are educational? An ant farm? A book on the periodic table? A lego kit? A game like Monopoly that teaches your children how to add doubles and count money?

 

How much more would it cost if one of your children was special needs? Anything from dyslexia to major physical ailments that require ramps and other special equipment?

 

Just wondering.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Does that include the cost of the square footage of your house that is used for homeschooling? (livingroom, kitchen (table), kids' bedrooms, bathrooms, and yard)

Our space would be used for a homework, library area anyway. We aren't taking away from something to do it.

 

Does that include the heat and air conditioning and electricity to maintain that percent of your home?

My funny answer to this is... my AC/Heater broke last June. It is possible to live in FL without such a device. But we would keep it the same temp regardless if we were home or not (about 78-80 for financial reasons).

 

Does that include 45c/mile for all educational transportation to the library, zoo, science center, nature center, coop, Grand Canyon, and the Lincoln Memorial?

My biggest transportation cost is medical related. They often walk to the library (my teen does daily). We don't have extra trips right now because we are homeschooling. I also made sure when I bought a car it got 30/40mpg because of my driving expenses.

 

Does that include music lessons or gym/sports?

Gymnastics would happen here regardless, and it is cheap. I'll ponder music if I ever get the piano up here from my mom's.

 

Does that include a sewing machine and kitchen resources (home ec)? "Shop" is pricey, too, if your kids learn to do woodworking, or to change a tire or the oil in the car.

My ex is a mechanic and covers all that with stuff he has to have anyway. We would have the rest regardless - exMIL bought her the sewing machine. None of the kitchen stuff is really extra in my mind.

 

Does that include library fines?

We don't have these.... well, my 8yo owes $3 because she hid a book. I'm not paying it, she can :p

 

Does that include birthday gifts that are educational? An ant farm? A book on the periodic table? A lego kit? A game like Monopoly that teaches your children how to add doubles and count money?

We don't really buy with the intent for birthdays that it is "educational". Last year they got tickets to Legoland because I got a good deal, and the oldest got a new pair of jeans.

 

How much more would it cost if one of your children was special needs? Anything from dyslexia to major physical ailments that require ramps and other special equipment?

Some of the materials for special needs are expensive - I recently sprung for AAS. Is it more expensive to educate her than her sisters? Sort of - but then, not really. My kids are all different and I really can't share much between them as it turns out. The trick is finding what works for the kid - no different than any other child at home.

 

Could I make great use of the $7500 the state was willing to pay to send her to a private school? Sure - i could have bought all her stuff for the next 8-9 years with it probably!

 

A child with major physical ailments might already be getting SSI to help with medical costs, my daughter is eligible based on her long-term medical issues and cognitive delays. I just haven't done it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When we got our property tax statements in the mail last week, I did pause to look at the tax breakdown amounts. $1550 to our school district. I think about my friend teaching in an inner city school in an open classroom (a room with only 3 walls), I thought about her low salary, I thought about her desperate hope to help children learn to read and calculate, to appreciate literature, to be fascinated with the world. She (and her students) need our monetary support. Personally, I would rather the school district spend money on building her a 4th wall to her classroom than on an electronic white board that doesn't work half the time, but, there you have it.

 

I think the kids of this desperate city are very much worth my tax dollars, even if I don't always like how the school administrates my funding.

 

But here is the real thing for me--in our city, we pay millage to support our local library. Our property tax this year kicked in $110 for our library system. But the truth is that if I had to put a dollar amount on all the books I check out in a year for homeschooling, the amount would be in the many, many, many thousands.

 

I'm sure there are plenty of people here in this city that think supporting the library is a waste of their tax dollars, but I am glad for their tax money. In a city with struggling public schools, we have absolutely the most fantastic library system. I don't know how I could possibly afford to homeschool without our PUBLIC LIBRARIES.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Does that include the cost of the square footage of your house that is used for homeschooling? (livingroom, kitchen (table), kids' bedrooms, bathrooms, and yard)

 

Those things would be in our home regardless of where we send our kids to school. I don't know any homeschoolers that have a specially built house for homeschooling. Nor do I know any non-homeschoolers that don't have bedrooms, living rooms or a kitchen table.

 

Does that include the heat and air conditioning and electricity to maintain that percent of your home?

 

This stays the same regardless of where we send out kids to school.

 

Does that include 45c/mile for all educational transportation to the library, zoo, science center, nature center, coop, Grand Canyon, and the Lincoln Memorial?

 

We have driven to the Grand Canyon, so no. It does include cost to drive to local places.

 

Does that include music lessons or gym/sports?

 

Yes it does, but we would do music regardless of where our children went to school.

 

Does that include a sewing machine and kitchen resources (home ec)? "Shop" is pricey, too, if your kids learn to do woodworking, or to change a tire or the oil in the car.

 

The cost of learning to change the oil is 0 if you already do it at home. We don't have special homeschool kitchen resources. That would be weird.

 

Does that include library fines?

 

Yes. No more than $10 a year.

 

Does that include birthday gifts that are educational? An ant farm? A book on the periodic table? A lego kit? A game like Monopoly that teaches your children how to add doubles and count money?

 

I would hope that I would get educational type gifts for my children no matter whether they were homeschooled or not.

 

How much more would it cost if one of your children was special needs? Anything from dyslexia to major physical ailments that require ramps and other special equipment?

 

It would cost slightly more, but not much.

 

Just wondering.

 

Honestly, most of those questions are odd.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most homeschoolers are not figuring in the "opportunity cost" of a parent not working into the real cost of homeschooling. You might say you only spend $800 on materials a year, but it neglects the labor costs and opportunity cost of being out of the labor market. That is basic economics.

 

I get that many people place a higher value on being home with their children than they do on the salary they might earn were they working. But it is a "cost." And one that is more than $10k per year.

 

Bill

 

Yes, there are costs with losing a potential wage-earner. However, every single family I know with a parent working around their child's school hours is limited to part-time work. Parents in this situation are the "secondary" income, and often do not take home much more than 10K, when you factor in loss wages every time schools are not in session and weekly early-release days. Many are working simply to supplement the costs of sending their child to school- those after-school Kumon math and reading classes cost $225/mont per child.

 

Of course, there are plenty of dual-income families where both parents work closer to full-time and take home much more income, but those families are paying for childcare outside of school hours, which adds up fast. I'm also willing to bet that families in this situation pay for additional expenses such as convenience foods, etc., that we don't.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What about vouchers for all? While I do believe education is a public good there is no need for it to be provided by a single school system. Why are we confining this public payment to a single entity when clearly many parents prefer private or homeschooling options? I really think that educational options and outcomes over time would imiprove with vouchers. In New Orleans, the voucher program instituted after Katrina seems to have improved outcomes based on what I've read.

 

Currently, in my public school district, there is a lot of controversy about a new Spanish Immersion program that was created. Some think the money should be spent on lang. instruction for all elementary students rather than a single class. If we had vouchers than a group of parents/teachers/entrepreneurs could set up a school like this w/o all the bureaucratic red tape. If there is sufficient demand, the school will succeed, if not it will fail and the consumer (the parent & the student) will have spoken.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most homeschoolers are not figuring in the "opportunity cost" of a parent not working into the real cost of homeschooling. You might say you only spend $800 on materials a year, but it neglects the labor costs and opportunity cost of being out of the labor market. That is basic economics.

 

I get that many people place a higher value on being home with their children than they do on the salary they might earn were they working. But it is a "cost." And one that is more than $10k per year.

 

Bill

 

 

 

I so agree. Most people I hear talk about how much cheaper it is than a private school. Yet, whenever someone asks me about the cons of homeschooling, my first response is that we have to remain a single-income family. It's impossible to not see that at least financially, if I returned to work, we would be in a much better position. Even figuring in private school, childcare and the cost associated with working, we're 'losing' thousands of dollars a year. Obviously we've weighed those costs and decided they are worth it, but I feel like no one who I know homeschooling ever admits this financial hit.

 

To the OP, here 65% of our property taxes go to our school district, as well as money that comes from certain sales taxes, lottery sales, state income tax etc. Our school district spent $14,967 per student in the 2011-12 school year. That of course pays for a large number of things outside of just teachers and curriculum. Some good things and some not so good things, I'm sure.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am 70 years old. We have lived in this city over 28 years and paid both city and county school taxes all that time. Our boys are both in their late thirties now. Except for one child who attended the local public school for one year, we paid private school tuition for them from 1984 to 1995, and elite private college tuition after that for 5 years each. When they were in private school here they were denied all services and programs provided by their local public school.

 

My wife also attended private professional school for 3 years while the kids were in elementary and high school. I commuted over 130 miles a day to work for decades so everyone could attend his/her desired school. My cars not infrequently broke down on the road, day and night. We were not rich and received little or no parental help. Indeed we had no savings and many months I spent 100% of my salary on tuition and borrowed money to live on. One month during that period I was even a recipient of an emergency Catholic charity donation. (I tried to pay them back later by donating my old car to that charity.)

 

Over the past 13 years, with no kids in school, we have continued to pay local school taxes as well as a second set of school taxes in a distant state where we own an undeveloped lot, which we sacrificed for years to purchase. This year we are developing that lot and those taxes will more than triple.

 

I was pretty upset when my unenrolled son was denied access to a public after school program our taxes were paying for, but now that it is all over and they are fairly well educated, I don't feel the anger that some do against funding public school. Maybe its because I don't feel the stress right now. But I am glad my tax dollars are going to public school, as flawed as it is. It seems much better than the alternative, a state where education is provided only to the wealthy, or to those who value education so highly (as those here do), that they will designate one family member to teach instead of earn, or designate almost all earnings to tuition.

 

If my parents had not themselves been teachers, probably I would not have had the perspective to value education so much myself.

 

Sometimes I still wonder whether all that tuition money might not have been better left in our budget. My own mother loved a certain private school so much based on her experience at the associated college of education that she sent us there for years, right past the local high school one mile from home. She did not realize that time had deteriorated the quality of the private school and that the public school actually offered more and better choices. When I went to an elite college, one classmate was a boy who had been better prepared at the local public school. He always excelled me after that, in college and grad school, where we both had the same major.

 

Education is very challenging. I think as long we as teach curiosity and persistent hard work at exploring and maturing, and trying to remain open minded, encouraging creativity and individuality, we are doing most of what we can. I think all of you here deserve great credit for the time and energy you are investing in education, much more than the average person. Try to have faith in the outcome as you keep the course, under challenging financial burdens. I think we will mostly find that education pays good dividends, for us and others around us.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know that charter schools will not solve every problem, but we are blessed to have some highly-functioning charter schools in the area. Our older son will begin attending one next August. Had it not been for this opportunity, we would be paying for a private school or homeschooling. As it is, the charters here are only partially publicly-funded. They receive less per pupil than the zoned schools, but at least it's something. They have asked parents to consider donating $100/mth per student to make up the difference between what they receive and what they need to run - and this is still less than the zoned schools.

 

It isn't perfect, but for me it makes me feel better about where our tax dollars are going. It's just one option. Perhaps if your state allows charters, you could create a homeschool co-op charter. I know programs like this already exist in some states. Bear in mind, though: getting money "from the state" (even if it's really your money to begin with) comes with strings attached. If you are radically opposed to testing, etc. then this would not be the option for you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We already pay a ridiculous amount in property tax for our schools and they are now asking for an 8.9 mill levy! I might not mind so much if the school didn't pay the teachers so much (about $35,000 above the local average income in a highly educated area), have what seems like a million highly paid administrators, spend so much on an endless list of extracurricular activities, and COMPLETELY deny access to homeschoolers for everything, both academic and extracurricular.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Honestly, most of those questions are odd.

 

Does that include the cost of the square footage of your house that is used for homeschooling? (livingroom, kitchen (table), kids' bedrooms, bathrooms, and yard)

 

Does that include the heat and air conditioning and electricity to maintain that percent of your home?

 

Does that include 45c/mile for all educational transportation to the library, zoo, science center, nature center, coop, Grand Canyon, and the Lincoln Memorial?

 

Does that include music lessons or gym/sports?

 

Does that include a sewing machine and kitchen resources (home ec)? "Shop" is pricey, too, if your kids learn to do woodworking, or to change a tire or the oil in the car.

 

Does that include library fines?

 

Does that include birthday gifts that are educational? An ant farm? A book on the periodic table? A lego kit? A game like Monopoly that teaches your children how to add doubles and count money?

 

How much more would it cost if one of your children was special needs? Anything from dyslexia to major physical ailments that require ramps and other special equipment?

 

Just wondering.

 

 

What I took away from the questions was that they were pointing out that the amount school districts spend on each student does not just include curriculum or sports, but everything from groundskeeping to facility maintenance and bussing etc. So you can't fairly compare spending $1000 on curriculum for 3 children this year to what the school district is spending per student without considering those other items.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I taught, I was given $25 to run my classroom. I was required to buy two different gradebooks with that money which cost around $15. So I had, give or take a few dollars, $10 for classroom supplies. Also, as a new teacher, I came into a completely empty room. Other teachers cleaned me out before I got there. I had no stapler, no chalk, no pens, pencils, no erasers, no scissors. I taught high school, so it wasn't like I needed 25 child-sized scissors, but there are basic supplies that most teachers need at some point. I spent $500 of my own money the first year (some of that was paint because I painted my room).

 

My room was so cold in the winter that I taught in a coat and gloves. I had no air condiitioning at all, so it was often in the 90's the first two weeks of school.

 

I still think too much money is being thrown at the schools. I strongly feel that the money was misallocated at my school.

 

 

 

This is what bothers me the most. I don't mind paying into a system that my kids are not involved in. And of course money is going to pay for the building upkeep, specialized programs for certain children etc. But with the amount of money that the schools are getting, it makes me mad that the teachers get the salaries that they do and on top of that are expected to pay for all sorts of basic supplies.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

But with the amount of money that the schools are getting, it makes me mad that the teachers get the salaries that they do and on top of that are expected to pay for all sorts of basic supplies.

 

It is becoming comically and sadly worse for California after the ACLU lawsuit. Schools without "strong" fundraisers are going to be in a tough spot supplying school supplies like pencils and paper because the students has a legal right not to bring anything.

"The battle to get students to bring basic supplies is difficult when some respond -- technically correctly -- "I don't have to bring anything to class," Schaupp said."(Source)

 

My kids are getting a lot more materials from their virtual academy than they had from their B&M school. The school also rents out its facilities on Sundays for church worship services. It is really a mismanagement of funds. Our current school superintendent is retiring and the previous superintendent retired two years ago. The one before that retired four years ago. So we had three school superintendents retiring/retired in 5 years. Not sure who funds their pensions.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

these struggles are so complex. In my son's elementary school outside a small town in Georgia,, most parents did not even show up to the PTA meeting where we were told there was no money for books. Those of us in attendance offered to pay for the books for all students, but we were told this was not allowed!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Those of us in attendance offered to pay for the books for all students, but we were told this was not allowed!

 

 

Ask the school teachers to register at donorschoose.org. Monetary donations for curriculum or library books are typically not allowed but donation in kind are.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually homeschooling is cheaper than public school here, at least for me. Our public schools are not "free". There are registration fees, book rental fees, activity fees, PTO fees, you pay cost for workbooks. This does not include school lunches and clothes. K would have cost almost $200 in fees I figure. I save that money by not sending them. I can easily purchase elementary curriculum for less than that. Costs increase incrementally each year. The high school registration alone is $500.

 

Our local schools are decent and I don't mind my property taxes going there. Our state is quite corrupt so I am concerned about the money that goes to education in our state taxes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

 

This is what bothers me the most. I don't mind paying into a system that my kids are not involved in. And of course money is going to pay for the building upkeep, specialized programs for certain children etc. But with the amount of money that the schools are getting, it makes me mad that the teachers get the salaries that they do and on top of that are expected to pay for all sorts of basic supplies.

 

 

 

In my area, salaries are good. A beginning teacher makes nearly $50,000. I know it isn't the case everywhere, and teacher should not have to provide basic supplies. When I was in public schools, the district spent millions on computer labs for elementary schools. Never understood the point in that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am happy to pay for schools. Much happier than I am for prisons, weapons, and any number of other endeavors. I can't think of much more social projects I like better. Roads are awful where I am, so I suspect I need to pay more for them, too, while I am at it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am happy to pay for schools. Much happier than I am for prisons, weapons, and any number of other endeavors. I can't think of much more social projects I like better. Roads are awful where I am, so I suspect I need to pay more for them, too, while I am at it.

 

Most of us put a priority on education and are willing to pay for it. However, we still need to make sure that money is used effectively and wisely. We have poured more and more money into education with no apparent change in outcomes. The issue is we are not spending the money effectively. Any company with similar results would be out of business.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most of us put a priority on education and are willing to pay for it. However, we still need to make sure that money is used effectively and wisely. We have poured more and more money into education with no apparent change in outcomes. The issue is we are not spending the money effectively. Any company with similar results would be out of business.

 

Oh, I think we've seen there are and have been plenty of companies that pour money into questionable and ineffective spending (such as ridiculous perks and huge bonuses) that are still in business.

 

http://en.wikipedia....es_and_scandals

(Check out how many airlines are on that list! Yikes. These include fraudulent and dangerous behavior, not merely overspending.)

 

Some businesses make unusual choices, such as some high tech firms that pay for food and massage for employees. Who's to say if that's a waste or keeps the workers productive? Free trip to Vegas? Special brew of beer? Full gym? Dogs at work? Free manicure/pedicure each month? I have been questioned lately whenever I mentioned something, so I am being careful to give a footnote for each claim.

 

http://www.forbes.co...employees-love/

 

More to the point, I am not sure how calculating the amount of one's property tax goes into a particular service (including but not limited to education of neighbors' children) ensures that the money is used effectively and wisely. I think as a country we have confused data collection with action.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The thing that bothers me is the amount of money spent for the highest administration positions. Recently, it was in our local small town (20k population) newspaper about how one administer was going to work part time next year and then retire. His part time salary is 88k!!! Part time!!!! I told my husband he was in the wrong line of work. We can only dream of that type of salary for full time work around here. This is where all the tax levies pleading for more money goes. Oh- it also goes toward giving every high school and junior high student their own ipad next year.

 

I do think a voucher system would improve education because when you have to compete for $$$, your quality has to improve or else you shut down.

 

Beth

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Most homeschoolers are not figuring in the "opportunity cost" of a parent not working into the real cost of homeschooling. You might say you only spend $800 on materials a year, but it neglects the labor costs and opportunity cost of being out of the labor market. That is basic economics.

 

I get that many people place a higher value on being home with their children than they do on the salary they might earn were they working. But it is a "cost." And one that is more than $10k per year.

 

Bill

 

 

When I began my home schooling journey I did figure out the amount of money I was not making at work, but a realistic number would be far from $10k a year for anyone without a college degree or a good management job. The amount of money you are not spending on work clothes, commute costs, daycare for younger children who would need full time day care as well as before and after school care eat up a tremendous chunk of money. No one is realistic about fast food costs when you simply must grab a burger when you had to work late and the commute was bad and the cost to your health for people who do that too often. The extra weight my brother carries from this exact lifestyle is going to shorten his life. We have a family history of heart disease. He is a healthy eater except for the fast food on busy days when both he and his wife work late. I also must mention that the few hours you are home with an elementary school age child after they have been picked up from daycare must be spent doing home work and the cost of missing your child's childhood cannot be counted in dollars.

 

Yes, I sabotaged my career by only working nights when my children were young. I was offered a high paying management position that I turned down. I could have put them in daycare, before and after school care, but my son would not have two years of college completed before his 17th birthday, my dd would not have been in all the plays she has been in (she is getting rave reviews for her last play still). The stock market has made sure that I would not have much more money in my retirement account than is there right now, so I feel I won on that score. I cheated the feds, I didn't work just to pay taxes, lol. I counted the cost, with the bigger picture in mind, and I am satisfied.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh, I think we've seen there are and have been plenty of companies that pour money into questionable and ineffective spending (such as ridiculous perks and huge bonuses) that are still in business.

 

I agree there are boondoggles and inefficiencies in business as well but the people who pay for that are the owners and shareholders who have chosen to invest in the company and not the taxpayers. However, barring a government bailout, there is some end point where the company will go out of business if it makes enough poor decisions. Owners and shareholders may choose to sell their ownership if they are unhappy with the decisions.

 

In government programs, everyone knows the funding stream will continue because we are required to pay taxes and therefore the taxpayers are on the hook for poor management decisions and inefficiencies. There is little incentive to save in these bureaucracies and much incentive to expand.

 

More to the point, I am not sure how calculating the amount of one's property tax goes into a particular service (including but not limited to education of neighbors' children) ensures that the money is used effectively and wisely. I think as a country we have confused data collection with action.

 

Data collection is the starting point for action. Without data, we cannot analyze effectiveness or value. Value cannot be determined without a concomitant price tag. The amount of our property taxes is at least an appx. of that price tag and helps us to assess the value of that expenditure.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

According to the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office:

 

It costs an average of about $47,000 per year to incarcerate an inmate in prison in California.

 

Food for thought.

 

Bill

 

 

 

 

 

That's because we're paying for their sex-change operations!

 

Hee hee.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am happy to pay for schools. Much happier than I am for prisons, weapons, and any number of other endeavors. I can't think of much more social projects I like better. Roads are awful where I am, so I suspect I need to pay more for them, too, while I am at it.

 

This is kind of where I am. There are a LOT of things our tax dollars fund that I am not a fan of. But I really, really like state parks and city parks and libraries, and roads, and the list goes on. So I just pretend that that is where all MY money goes. The value I get from these things is worth what we pay in taxes.

 

I just looked up my district. I didn't see anything recent, but in 2005, they were paying $6,600 a student, which I think is awesome considering it includes salaries and maintenance, leases, etc. Salaries are 90% of that cost and teachers here make a livable wage, but nothing like *I* think they deserve. It is a "good" district. I put the quotes because I don't measure success in standardized test scores. But needless to say, putting DD in school here would be an option, and it would turn out OK. Though they just cut the GT program though, and that pisses me off. They even gave a budget breakdown. The state gave 2K per kid, the homeowners gave 2K per kid and the other $2K came from buisness owners.

 

I don't mind paying the taxes, truly. But It *would* be nice to have a break for our schooling years.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, the problem is largely due to "baseline budgeting." Every year the schools are allotted a certain percentage increase of their budget over the previous year, so if they spend less this year, then next year's budget will be based on that amount. Where is their incentive to curtail their spending? When the end of the year approaches they just hurry up and spend every last dime so they're sure to get it for next year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I shouldn’t have read this whole thread because the poster who made hateful and snarky comments about not wanting to pay for public school at all has left me feeling physically ill.

 

I pay $2,043 dollars in taxes towards our local public schools. That is a bargain. I will gladly pay that amount for the rest of my life.

 

Money towards schools is not just going to the school up the street. It is also going into the children in my community who don’t have the benefit of homeschooling moms, afterschooling dads, or ordinary parents who have a clue. My taxes help ensure that all children at least have access to something.

 

Money towards education is also going towards caring for children with Autism. 1 in 88 kids now has ASD, and that number keeps rising. Sometimes it feels like most of the world has completely ignored that fact. It costs a huge amount of money to help children with ASD, and school districts are mandated to educate them. Yes, the way many districts go about this could be improved, but at least they do something.

 

When you are saying that you don’t support paying tax dollars towards education you are saying that you don’t want to help your neighbor’s child who has Autism, even though everyone else on your block is writing out a check. You’re saying that you don’t care about the kid growing up in a drug den who will never see a book, except at school. You’re saying that you are somehow above and beyond a collective society that decided a long time ago that we were in this together. Thomas Jefferson and all that!

 

Taxes suck but we pay them anyways because there is a morality behind them that goes beyond selfishness.

 

People who understand Classical Education should know that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share


×
×
  • Create New...