U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maine
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 03-02-2008, 06:39 AM
 
Location: Southwestern Ohio
4,112 posts, read 5,726,154 times
Reputation: 1620

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maineah View Post
Excellent post Acadianlion and right on the money! My brother is a High School Guidance Counselor in the mid Maine area. He has said for many years the biggest problem with lack of funding for schools is the number of over-paid administrators and the sheer number of school districts in the state. Change is never popular and someone always gets their ox gored. But doing nothing as the State buries itself in more and more debt is not the answer either. Schools need to conserve whenever possible too. Freeport schools take all of their soccer balls to the dump every year so they can get brand new ones. They budget for new ones whether they need them or not. I know a guy who gets a call from the man who runs the dump and tells him when the school has thrown away the previous year's balls. He goes down and fills his pick up truck with the balls and delivers them to area play grounds. He says there's nothing at all wrong with the balls and the kids at the playground love getting them. It's a small thing but when you're looking to save some money a grand or two for new soccer balls every year adds up. It also makes you wonder what else they could do to conserve funds.
The school systems are not the only tax payer funded entities that need to be overhauled. Public works, police,and fire departments should be looking over their shoulders too. Not every town needs a half million dollar ladder truck and S.W.A.T. equipment.

Don't forget how many of the taxpayer dollars got to the NEA. When I worked at the schools, there seemed to be a fair amount (rightfully so) of resentment as this money could have been put to much better uses at the local levels to really help our kids.

As for an overhaul on other taxpayer funded entities...they have to find some way to use our maoney. reducing taxes wouldn't be any fun now, would it?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-02-2008, 07:14 AM
 
Location: Waldo County
1,220 posts, read 3,443,843 times
Reputation: 1393
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapereaude View Post
Maine went through a round of school consolidation back in the 50s or early 60s. Before we support a second verse of this tune, why don't we take a look at the results of that old consolidation, economically, and from the perspective of taxpayer and parental control? In Searsmont, the town ended up paying for a new primary school building, and middle and high-school students ended up getting bussed 12 miles or so to the County seat, Belfast. That was when gas was about 15/gallon. I've spent much of my life around academia, and in my opinion, the Searsmont residents who went through the village school system got a far better education for their parents' tax dollar than do those who now spend two hours a day on the bus.
This kind of bureaucratic manoeuvre generally ends up with a larger bureaucracy, and higher taxes, but produces an inferior education.
On the other hand, if Maine's students were better-educated, they would know not to buy lottery tickets, and not to support politicians who cripple local economies with unfunded mandates. Then some of Augusta's politically-driven welfare bureaucracy might still be on welfare, but at least they'd be out of our hair and our wallets except at the food bank.
I would like very much to agree with this. But I simply cannot.
I was raised in a neighborhood and walked through an apple orchard to my first grade classes. By the time I was in the fourth grade, the school department was building a new elementary school but due to a steel strike, my fifth grade was (horrors!) spent going to an elementary school that required that I take a bus every morning. I remember the trauma.

Not too long ago, I visited that old neighborhood. BOTH schools were gone, the victims of some sort of consolidation.

As much as we dearly love our little schools in each town, the simple fact is that we cannot afford to pass along the continuing upward spiral of educational costs, special needs programs, and the "everything in the pantry" approach to education that is mandated by Augusts to the residential homeowner. If we have near zero industrial growth throughout the state, then homeowners will spend more and more money on just one little school.

Eventually people will NOT be able to afford it, and unless the problem is approached head on right now, the pain and suffering will be far worse.

I am disturbed that someone has coined the expression for this process as "rural cleansing". That is most unfortunate, because is implies a deliberate "us versus them" confrontation. This is not the way it should be, and we need to face the reality of the needs of true education, versus what the state in its infinite wisdom dictates.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-02-2008, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Northern Maine
9,494 posts, read 14,291,662 times
Reputation: 8929
Rural cleansing was around long before Baldacci's attack on rural Maine. Anguished King did far more damage than Baldacci did. The term "rural cleansing" came about around the time of the Lewinsky war against Serbia. Ethnic cleansing was the rallying cry for the Clinton administration. It made sense to adopt their successful tactic to accurately describe the situation in Northern Maine.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-02-2008, 11:16 AM
 
161 posts, read 344,221 times
Reputation: 244
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acadianlion View Post

If true reform without pain and suffering by school children is desired, then the impossibly expensive "special needs" mandates of Augusta need to be repealed, and the unrealistic and utopian expectations of the the state's department of education need to be refined to reflect the local community and the individual property owners' ability to pay for them.
\

Just want to set the record straight on this one.

Special needs mandates have nothing to do with Augusta. Those mandates come from the federal level and states have no say in them.

This is my 24th year of handling the fiscally related issues of education for the state of Connecticut's legislature. The misconception that special needs mandates are state requirements is prevalent here too. I can't count the number of times I've had to tell people that Connecticut's special needs mandates cost nothing, it's Washington D.C.'s that are costing all of us.

Just putting the blame in the right place.

Alan
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-02-2008, 02:30 PM
 
Location: Eastport, Maine
1,158 posts, read 2,122,663 times
Reputation: 1116
Amen Lubec: We spent 40K at a school to provide a handicapped bathroom for one student, under the ADD (federal law). Unfortunately, the student stayed about two weeks after the renovation was completed and decided to be home schooled. The
best and weirdest federal mandate I ever saw was at the Florida State Fire Academy. Here were dormitories that were home to fireman for 8 weeks during training. The dorms had ramps and handicapped bathrooms. Does that make any sense, how can a person become a fireman if they need a ramp or a handicapped bathroom, but it's the law, Federal, that is.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-02-2008, 05:05 PM
 
Location: Waldo County
1,220 posts, read 3,443,843 times
Reputation: 1393
Well, yes and no.

My comment was made primarily due to the report on such things given to me by the administration in this town. It may well be the "fault" of the Federal government, but the blame that is being place by this town is on Augusta, from whom the money from the gummint flows.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ADSLubec View Post
\

Just want to set the record straight on this one.

Special needs mandates have nothing to do with Augusta. Those mandates come from the federal level and states have no say in them.

This is my 24th year of handling the fiscally related issues of education for the state of Connecticut's legislature. The misconception that special needs mandates are state requirements is prevalent here too. I can't count the number of times I've had to tell people that Connecticut's special needs mandates cost nothing, it's Washington D.C.'s that are costing all of us.

Just putting the blame in the right place.

Alan
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-15-2009, 06:04 PM
 
Location: On a Slow-Sinking Granite Rock Up North
3,637 posts, read 5,263,433 times
Reputation: 2650
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acadianlion View Post
I think that this educational hornets' nest has stirred up a lot of noise, and something will be done about skyrocketing educational costs in Maine as a result. The turmoil has only begun, but already we are villifying the guy who caused it: the governor. I think this is short sighted.

The real issue is that Maine as a state spends entirely too much money. There are two main culprits in the spending of Maine peoples' monies. One is the legislature or sheer size of government, and the other is the state's educational system. If a system mandated by government is such that the taxation resulting forces people who have lived on their land and in their homes for years and years are forced to move to more modest accomodations, then the system is flawed and should be corrected.

If Baldacci has tried, IN HIS SECOND AND LAST TERM, to make a meaningful change in the size and shape of government, he would have been stopped dead in his tracks by the entrenched bureaucracy. He chose to attack the overbloated and far too expensive education system in Maine, and thus will reap some sort of result. Maybe good, and maybe bad, or a mixture of both, but the problem is the system is far too expensive for a state of 1.2 million people to afford. Too many bureaucrats, too many buildings, declining school enrollment, too many miles to travel, too many oil fired boilers to fuel, and NO commercial development to help to pay taxes to relieve the homeowner from shoulder the entire burden.

If true reform without pain and suffering by school children is desired, then the impossibly expensive "special needs" mandates of Augusta need to be repealed, and the unrealistic and utopian expectations of the the state's department of education need to be refined to reflect the local community and the individual property owners' ability to pay for them.
Several great points, but please don't forget Mainecare in your list of things that the state spends a lot of money on.

Mainecare owes literally millions to many healthcare providers from 2004 to present - some allocations were never paid, thus leaving the providers to charge more to their patients in other areas to defer costs.

Quote:If true reform without pain and suffering by school children is desired, then the impossibly expensive "special needs" mandates of Augusta need to be repealed, and the unrealistic and utopian expectations of the the state's department of education need to be refined to reflect the local community and the individual property owners' ability to pay for them.[/quote]

Agreed.

Last edited by cebdark; 01-15-2009 at 06:12 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-15-2009, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Maine
5,969 posts, read 11,134,540 times
Reputation: 5240
Our plan was voted down Tuesday.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-15-2009, 06:18 PM
 
Location: On a Slow-Sinking Granite Rock Up North
3,637 posts, read 5,263,433 times
Reputation: 2650
Quote:
Originally Posted by ADSLubec View Post
\

Just want to set the record straight on this one.

Special needs mandates have nothing to do with Augusta. Those mandates come from the federal level and states have no say in them.

This is my 24th year of handling the fiscally related issues of education for the state of Connecticut's legislature. The misconception that special needs mandates are state requirements is prevalent here too. I can't count the number of times I've had to tell people that Connecticut's special needs mandates cost nothing, it's Washington D.C.'s that are costing all of us.

Just putting the blame in the right place.

Alan
It's true that the feds provide most of the mandates, but the state does have it's role in it as well. Scroll down to Regulations as of 6/24 - Effective up to & Including August 2, 2007 at the following link.
Maine Special Services-Special Education Regulations

It's a long read, but informative.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-16-2009, 04:31 AM
 
Location: 3.5 sq mile island ant nest next to Canada
3,015 posts, read 4,872,001 times
Reputation: 2127
The plan was voted down in Eastport, Perry,Jonesport, and Calais. See ya in 6 weeks!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maine
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top