"High Achievement always takes place in the framework of high expectation." - Charles Kettering

Monday, October 21, 2013

A Sobering Graphic of How Many Highest Paid Public Servant in the US are Coaches: What Does this Say About our Priorities?


Click on the above link to read the article that accompanies this graphic, but very little clarification is necessary. American people enable this inane reality by buying into the misguided notion that sports are self-supporting. I challenge anyone to scrutinize their public school or university budget data to determine whether or not your local school has self-sufficient activities. I evaluated the 2011 Big Ten data in response to a similar argument with a sports fan friend. Five of the ten (at the time) universities in the Big Ten, including Wisconsin had sports budgets that were subsidized by University funding to the tune of 4-10%, with Wisconsin falling at 7.5%. This is equivalent to about 7.2 million dollars of the general ed fund being appropriated by the UW athletic department, which has the temerity to claim a $665K profit after taking all that general ed funding. This at the same time that our flagship university struggles to provide for National Merit scholars, who rarely select UW for lack of funding. REALLY?

ECSD's co- and extra-curricular committee dispelled the notion that Evansville Sports are self-supporting when a complete budget analysis was finally provided to the school board, which they had requested for years.  They showed an unvarnished cost to provide each sport per student. As activity costs are "aided" at about two thirds, this makes the educational budget folks believe these  activities only cost a third of what they really do cost because "the state pays the other two thirds." REALLY? Where do you think the state gets that money from that pays for two thirds of your sports and other activities? Your taxes are paying for this one way or another, be it property tax or another tax. But at least they know there is a cost to provide them now.  $276K in this year's budget for the activities of the children in our district.

I have one last observation as regards ECSD's budget as pertains to curricular vs. co- and extra-curricular activities. Over the last three years, as previously reported, the curricular budget has lost 5 percent ($527K) while the curricular budget has increased by 10% ($26K).  Not exactly equal pain here. And how does our district support the vision statement of excellence in every aspect of every program? By having a GPA "requirement" of 1.5 to participate in said activities. "Because one F and three Cs is 1.5."  Never even a thought to insist that the kid who flunks a class has to off-set it by getting more than a C in another class. Excellence indeed!

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