News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Opinion

July 5, 2013

READERS’ FORUM: July 5, 2013

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A misuse of taxpayer money

After reading the recent Tribune-Star articles regarding the Vigo County School Corp. and attending the June 24 board meeting, I believe that investing $8 million to $9 million in a swimming facility is a misuse of taxpayers’ dollars.

There are a total of 129 students who participated in the swim/diving team during the 2012-2013 school year and an average of 239 Terre Haute Torpedoes swim team members for a total of 368 students in grades K-12 that would benefit from this swimming facility. If you round the number up to 500 to allow others to join and divide that number into $8.5 million and you get a grand total of $17,000 per swimmer just to build the facility.

The school corporation reported in the Tribune-Star on June 21 that they spent $10,800 per student on education during the 2011-2012 school year. Does this mean swimming competitions (and sports in general) are more important than education?

We have read about state funding for the VCSC remaining flat for the next two years and that Superintendent Dan Tanoos was quoted as stating the district “hasn’t been able to give employees a raise on the salary schedule for two years” (Tribune Star, May 19, 2013). Also, there may no longer be busing for middle school students participating in sports or out-of-county field trips for elementary schools due to The Affordable Care Act. So what makes the corporation feel that building a state of the art swimming facility is a good investment of taxpayer dollars?

If these facts concern you, then you need to make your voice heard. Attend the July 22 public meeting of the VCSC board at 6 p.m. on Wabash Avenue and let the corporation and board know that you are against their spending taxpayer dollars on something that doesn’t benefit the entire school enrollment.

Just remember, if you don’t say anything, then you are saying “yes.”

— Leah Myers

Terre Haute

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