I watched what I could of the Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) budget discussion last night at the Howard County Board of Education meeting (still waiting on it to be available this morning to watch all of it). I did not see all of it (had other things to do) but here are a couple of early morning notes:
- A magic $3.3 million was found coming into this meeting (I have lots of comments on that…stay tuned).
- There were a lot of advocates at the meeting for paraeducators and RSTs [reading support teachers], MSTs [math support teachers] and MISTs [math instructional support teachers]…they all got additional funding last night.
- I did not see (while I watched) any discussion about funding the proposed technology teacher positions on the chopping block…even after finding $3.3 million in additional funding
From the outside looking in…purely from a public view…looks like if you have advocates show up…you get funding…and if you do not…you get nothing….just ask the tech folks.
On Monday...the music and GT folks got their money…last night, paras and support teachers got money…but the tech folks did not.
$3.3 million in newly found funds yesterday would have paid for funding ALL tech positions and ALL para positions (per the cut and spending document in the past)…but the board decided to go another way…there was no easy decision for the board…but it felt like tech got the shaft because they did not have a support group at the meetings.
I understand how difficult a position the HoCoBOE members were put in with this budget. No choice they made was going to be a popular one. Someone was going to be upset no matter what they did.
I feel bad that technology took the big hit in this budget season and got no love yesterday. In a world run by technology in almost all positions once the kids leave schools…cutting that seems wrong to me. I am a technology person…it is what I do for a living…and know how important it is to start kids early in learning this skill.
I have lots more on the HCPSS budget…but thought I would start with this…stay tuned…more to come later today and tomorrow.
If there is a HCPSS tech teacher that would like to chat and/or write up a guest blog post…email me at email@example.com.