I can’t really believe what I heard recently – that our new East High school only has one janitor. I had heard that rather than cut teachers to pay for the Red Plan the School Board had drastically cut custodial staff. For a couple years classrooms have only been swept two times a week. It was once a daily occurance and anyone who has been in a classroom after a day of having been visited by 150 kids can easily see the necessity.
But, of course, it hasn’t just been the support staff that has been cut.
When I served on the School Board we had managed to pare students to much smaller numbers per teacher. In the elementary grades it was a rare classroom that had more then 26 kids in it. And then the experts at JCI helped design new schools. They did so with our old enrollment and classroom numbers in mind. That meant classrooms with small numbers of kids like in the Pre-Red Plan days. That meant that in the brand spanking new Lester Park School they installed 28 lockers for children per classroom. classrooms that now contain an impossible 36 kids in them.
That’s what might have been expected when, out of faith in our Napoleonic new Superintendent, our School Board gambled $5 million a year for twenty years from its classroom budget on bonds to pay for brick and mortar.
I’ll bet Keith Dixon never read any history. If he had he might have found this story instructive.
So might City Councilman Jeff Anderson when Ordean residents came to the City Council to explain that the Red Plan had not taken into account the parking needs of a new school of 1600 students and asked for a serious investigation of zoning needs and traffic impacts.
Here’s the famous map showing the size of Napoleon’s army from the time 400,000 left for Russia until its 10,000 survivors returned.