A brief recent email conversation about equity in the Duluth Schools

Sent to all School Board members:

WHY DOES THE EASTERN END OF TOWN GET ALMOST [all the] MONEY TO HELP EDUCATE THEIR LOW INCOME AS THE WEST END OF TOWN WE ALL KNOW WHERE THE LOW INCOME LIVE.. USE THE MONEY AS IT WAS INTENDED. I WOULD APPRECIATE A ANSWER W B

My Reply to W:

W,
The reasons are as simple as they are pathetic.

1. Precedent – because we are abiding by the letter of the law (now but not always) and use half of the funds to lower class size across the whole district and to fund our Curriculum Dept. (For which other funds should be made available.)

2. Political deference to Eastern voters if not outright fear of their reaction if we pulled half a million dollars out of their schools to send it to the schools with a higher free and reduced student population.

W pushes back:

LETTER OF THE LAW ?? MY UNDERSTANDING THE FUNDS ARE FOR LOW INCOME STUDENTS NOT MANY OUT EAST … SECOND POINT I AGREE

I explain:

Current Minn law requires only 50% of the $ to follow students.