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Old 01-28-2013, 06:35 AM
 
2,630 posts, read 4,032,841 times
Reputation: 1753

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Haven't been a hater so much lately so today I think I'll vent.

Brooklyn: Taxes on 3000+ sq ft home, valued at $1,000,000 $5600
LI: Taxes on 1800sq ft home valued at $350k $11,000 ($7800 schools)

Brooklyn: Elementary school has full music program starting in KG. Complete orchestra with multiple instruments and sections. Full drama program with plays starting in KG.
LI: Elementary has music program that starts in grade 3 with 2 instrument choices (Violin and Viola). Drama program with plays start in 4th grade.

Just an example of the arts and our schools do jump up in quality in HS but that is more demographics than value for the dollar. Many many fewer at risk kids, poor kids, etc.

I just don't get how we justify what we pay. Statistically we have a lot of intel finalists for a small area which is great, although the names read like a who's who from India and China (nothing wrong with it, just saying) but we also send a big contingent to the military and community colleges.

Now the discussion of dropping AP programs, etc.

Why can't we just say it out loud that mandated, contractual benefits and pensions coupled with unfunded State madates are taking pencils (and drumsticks and paint) right out of the kid's hands.

If we are so hell bent on "great schools" for the kids, how do we accept this? For what we pay, shouldn't we be adding programs? For $20k per kid, shouldn't we be at the forefront of technology?

Enrollments down, programs cut, costs up?! Somebody help me with the math.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:40 AM
 
2,178 posts, read 4,024,668 times
Reputation: 992
Quote:
Originally Posted by mongoose65 View Post
Haven't been a hater so much lately so today I think I'll vent.

Brooklyn: Taxes on 3000+ sq ft home, valued at $1,000,000 $5600
LI: Taxes on 1800sq ft home valued at $350k $11,000 ($7800 schools)

Brooklyn: Elementary school has full music program starting in KG. Complete orchestra with multiple instruments and sections. Full drama program with plays starting in KG.
LI: Elementary has music program that starts in grade 3 with 2 instrument choices (Violin and Viola). Drama program with plays start in 4th grade.

Just an example of the arts and our schools do jump up in quality in HS but that is more demographics than value for the dollar. Many many fewer at risk kids, poor kids, etc.

I just don't get how we justify what we pay. Statistically we have a lot of intel finalists for a small area which is great, although the names read like a who's who from India and China (nothing wrong with it, just saying) but we also send a big contingent to the military and community colleges.

Now the discussion of dropping AP programs, etc.

Why can't we just say it out loud that mandated, contractual benefits and pensions coupled with unfunded State madates are taking pencils (and drumsticks and paint) right out of the kid's hands.

If we are so hell bent on "great schools" for the kids, how do we accept this? For what we pay, shouldn't we be adding programs? For $20k per kid, shouldn't we be at the forefront of technology?

Enrollments down, programs cut, costs up?! Somebody help me with the math.
You need to factor in the NYC Income Tax in to your equations to come up with fair tax money.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:54 AM
 
2,630 posts, read 4,032,841 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agw123 View Post
You need to factor in the NYC Income Tax in to your equations to come up with fair tax money.
OK, add $2400 (that's without any pre tax incentives, tax credits, deductions, etc) on an $80k salary (far less than my kid's KG teacher makes but I digress). That's $8k.

Still far less than my taxes for double the house and better K-6 programs. NYC tax is a reasonable point but mostly moot for this argument. With all the LI incomes that originate in NYC you can add commuting. That would likely be a wash against the NYC tax in less than 6 months per year. NYC tax would effectively be 1/2 the cost of commuting.
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Old 01-28-2013, 06:59 AM
 
6,928 posts, read 8,954,945 times
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I don't have the full numbers with me. But the New York Times once reported that families in Park Slope, Cobble Hill etc. actually pay very high "miscellaneous fees" every year to support their enrichment programs, extra TAs etc. Some of these fees can go up to $10K/year. It's an effective tax.

The other thing that should be noted is - like in Park Slope and BPC - the DOE can potentially/effectively rezone certain blocks to suddenly assign kids to another school. Suburban communities on the other hand offer a level of certainty on what schools to attend.
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:06 AM
 
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Don't forget the NYX income tax which is approximately 3.5%. So for a couple making $150k that is an extra $4500.

In my SD the full complement of instruments is offered in 3rd grade - viola, violin, drums, band instruments, etc....

But I agree with you all the same.

In my SD here is what is currently happening. The superintendents office with the go ahead of the BOE has decided to expand a language offering to the elementary school. The language chosen - Mandarin! Laughable to say the least. The Foreign Services considers Mandarin one of the hardest languages to learn and we have decided to teach it to elementary school kids one day a week!

The SD is also planning to expand all language offerings to the elementary schools in an environment where we are losing $2mil in funding from LIPA. The kicker is this lost funding would have been offset by attrition in the teacher ranks due to reduced enrollment.

Of course all of this is decided in closed door meetings and at meetings where the full scope of the issues are not discussed.

The SD and the BOE is basically saying screw the taxpayer maintain headcount at all costs.
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:07 AM
 
2,630 posts, read 4,032,841 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forest_Hills_Daddy View Post
I don't have the full numbers with me. But the New York Times once reported that families in Park Slope, Cobble Hill etc. actually pay very high "miscellaneous fees" every year to support their enrichment programs, extra TAs etc. Some of these fees can go up to $10K/year. It's an effective tax.

The other thing that should be noted is - like in Park Slope and BPC - the DOE can potentially/effectively rezone certain blocks to suddenly assign kids to another school. Suburban communities on the other hand offer a level of certainty on what schools to attend.
I'm not questioning the comparison, but on a more figurative level, do LIers KNOW or believe that they are paying what they are paying and receiving FEWER services than schools in Park Slope, Cobble Hill or Mill Basin? Should they even be on par with our program offerings? Do we agree the "perception" on LI is our K-6 programs are vastly superior thus justifying the cost, or do we just accprt we have nicer playgrounds (although less frequently).

I'm not arguing. Just asking honest questions.
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Old 01-28-2013, 09:17 AM
 
1,083 posts, read 2,270,708 times
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My understanding is the school system in Park Slope (lived there in the early to mid '90s, before it became so hip) is very good at the k-8 levels, but the high school system is where the gap lies. I think John Jay is closed now, but it was rough back in the '90s, as are many of the city's public HS'. That would leave the magnet schools like Stuyvesant and Bronx Science, with their predominantly Asian student bodies, as the next step? Of course, for the price of a state college, there's always private, like Berkely Carrol.

Even back in the '90s, the local schools in Park Slope were very good due to a very high level of parental involvement, so I definitely believe there's private funding going on for many of the excellent programs.

When my friends from Brooklyn hear what my LI property taxes are, they can't understand why we just don't move back to Brooklyn. Besides the fact that a Park Slope brownstone, on a park block (between 8th Ave. and Prospect Park) now sells for close to $2mm (a fixer-upper could have been had back in '93 for less than $500k!), when you add NYC resident income tax to NYS and Federal, you're paying the highest marginal tax rate in the country.
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Old 01-28-2013, 09:30 AM
 
2,630 posts, read 4,032,841 times
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I keep showing how the NYC income tax is nominal when factored against commuting (since so much LI income comes from NYC jobs). TOPS is $2400 at $80k salary so even the $4800 (plus the $5600) equal $10,400. Still LESS than my Levitt cape taxes and dwindling services. Yeah it's nicer and safer here, but we're talking pure numbers. It SHOULD be nicer, safer and with more educational opportunity based on cost per student. I have friends in Bklyn and they pay next to nothing in additional school fees, while our PTA has their hands out every other day for money.

If Queens teachers made $125k to teach KG, would programs be decimated overnight? I think so. Welcome to LI.
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:06 AM
Status: "ready for fall." (set 20 days ago)
 
Location: under the beautiful Carolina blue
15,581 posts, read 23,670,057 times
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Well, their pay isn't that shabby - I know someone who is a first grade teacher and makes $80K - and that's after a 9 year maternity leave. That's right, 9 years. They get a 5 year leave and every time you have a baby the clock starts again. She went right back into the classroom she had left 9 years before. Nice job security.
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:12 AM
 
863 posts, read 1,753,933 times
Reputation: 462
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forest_Hills_Daddy View Post
I don't have the full numbers with me. But the New York Times once reported that families in Park Slope, Cobble Hill etc. actually pay very high "miscellaneous fees" every year to support their enrichment programs, extra TAs etc. Some of these fees can go up to $10K/year. It's an effective tax.

The other thing that should be noted is - like in Park Slope and BPC - the DOE can potentially/effectively rezone certain blocks to suddenly assign kids to another school. Suburban communities on the other hand offer a level of certainty on what schools to attend.
Yes they did but that's not a typical for NYC. They have decided to almost seperate themself and become the Long Island of the city. A lot of them consider this disposible income since they are high earners, it's almost like a competation for them when it comes to getting kids into schools.
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