February 28, 2013 | 1 comment | 776 views
Letters to the Editor
Concerns over transportation cuts
To the Editor:
This letter is in response to the articles regarding budget cuts to the high schools (“Major cuts in store for high schools,” Feb. 14-20. “Community fights for sports,” Feb. 21-27). I am an accountant and work on budgets in my current job. Has the Board of Education considered imposing activity-based fees to the high school families that use the after school and bus services? A number of school districts have started imposing nominal fees to help defray the costs of sports programs and busing. These fees keep the programs in place, and do not increase school taxes to the community.
I would much prefer to pay a $150 transportation fee to have my son on a yellow school bus than to have bus transportation eliminated. This proposed transportation fee would include all families using the buses, both public and private schools, to close the budget shortfall.
I would also think that the bowling team families would prefer to pay an activity fee of $50 rather than have the bowling team eliminated. These activity-based fees would have to be kept at a minimum cost as not to impose a burden on families, but yet include all of the sports teams to close the budget shortfall.
The fees I have mentioned are just estimates. The district accountants will be able to calculate what amount will close the deficit and keep the sports teams and school busing in place.
I hope that the board members and Dr. Heidenreich will consider this revenue-generating alternative as they work on finalizing the school budget over the next couple of weeks.
I am writing in regard to your article written in the Herald (“Major cuts in store for high schools,” Feb. 14-20) concerning the school budget for the Valley Stream Central High School District. In particular, cuts being made to buses traveling to Sacred Heart Academy in Hempstead and Chaminade in Uniondale.