SKSD to Host Legislative Roundtable

For those of you who haven’t been following the dialog about school funding in an earlier post, South Kitsap School District will host a legislative round-table at 6 p.m. Wednesday at which school board members will ask local candidates for the state legislature what they will do to provide for adequate funding of basic education. South Kitsap is part of a lawsuit involving numerous districts to, as SKSD board member Kathryn Simpson says, “compel the state to meet its obligations.”

RSVPs so far:

26th Legislative District

Position 1: Jan Angel, R-Port Orchard; Kim Abel, D-Port Orchard

Position 2: Marlyn Jensen, R-Gig Harbor; Larry Seaquist, D-Gig Harbor

35th Legislative District

Position 1: Marco Brown, R-Belfair

Position 2: Fred Finn, D-Belfair

10 thoughts on “SKSD to Host Legislative Roundtable

  1. Thanks for promoting this, Chris.

    FYI, I received confirmation from Kathy Haigh today, too.

    This is probably going to be the best venue to hear the local candidates views on state education issues. The public is, of course, invited and encouraged to attend.

    Kathryn Simpson

  2. What’s the follow up on this?

    And thanks for posting the levy history, Chris. It places both successes and failures in fuller context than attempts to attribute them to a single-issue.

  3. Registered Voter – I wrote this story about the roundtable

    I was hoping to hear more from the candidates. Incumbents Kathy Haigh and Larry Seaquist, who both serve of the house appropriations committee for education had the most to say. Mostly the other candidates asked questions (constructive) or made general statements supporting education funding (predictable). Board member Kathryn Simpson, who is SKSD’s legislative rep took the opportunity to give the candidates an earful on SKSD’s position on basic education funding. You’ll find much of it in her comments on this post:

  4. Thanks for posting the article link (I’d already caught up on the blog posts). I was curious regarding candidate positions as well. Lip service about the need to support education is one thing, but it is indeed about what candidates will do to provide for adequate funding of basic education.

  5. The taxpayers will support education with their last breath.
    What most won’t support is the WASTE of their hard earned dollars…NOT going to educate the students.

    For one example, NKSD let go teachers, a librarian, police officers… all to continue to fund a school swimming pool.

    And that is wise use of taxpayer dollars for education?

    SKSD lumps the theater and community classroom in with their swimming pool. They are proud to report they have less than a $100,000. loss.
    Apparently the income of the theater and community classes offset the real crocodile gobbling swimming pool expenses some relief and offers the casual reader some numbers that don’t seem bad on the face of it.

    I can see combining the theater and the community classes together. Both have little upkeep costs and probably about the same income.

    The swimming pool costs just to heat the pool are likely the same as to heat the entire school or more.

    The same taxpayers being forced to visit foodbanks or not pay their heating bill are forced into paying for this swimming pool used by what percent of the student body?

    How is it considered a ‘educational’ part of the school when only a few students use it?

    Why do our taxpayers have to cut back on their own heat while the school pool is kept heated and used?

    The school district has deliberately hidden the pool costs…and used the income from the community classes and theater to camouflage the cost of the pool…in my opinion…

    At least pretend to be concerned with education, not wasting tax payer dollars and the economy…..

    Sharon O’Hara.

  6. Swimming pools are very expensive to maintain. But, Sharon, the community makes use of this pool, in a variety of ways that promote public health.

    A group of women meets at dawn every single day and have for years for a water aerobics class. This class serves to help them maintain their weight and decrease their risk of heart disease.

    We must focus attention and funds, however, hard they are to come by, on prevention programs. The pool serves as one. So, it must stay, if at all possible.

    My thoughts,

    Mary Colborn

  7. Mary…A swimming pool is more than ‘expensive’…ask anyone who has one what the costs are then multiply by 1,000% and you might have the ballpark cost of the larger school swimming pool.

    It is not right by any standard to use people’s hard earned dollars… people who have trouble feeding their families and paying their own heating bills…to force them to pay tax dollars used to heat and support a school swimming pool instead of educating the students.

    Every winter we read of seniors around the country found frozen to death because they couldn’t pay for heat…. and here we are siphoning tax dollars meant for education into the endless void and gulping energy costs of a school swimming pool.

    It is a travesty to WASTE tax dollars meant to EDUCATE the students.

    Mary each community – including SK/PO should have a public community center to include a swimming pool, YMCA exercise facilities, child care, library, senior center and…?
    The costs could be offset by partnering with businesses and other avenues.

    I would give the school swimming teams and students priority times/days for use of the pool and the rest of the community would fit around that…including the great group of ladies you mention.

    The present pool could be turned into a hands on classroom for plants, hydroponic growing, tropical plants…a marine science classroom…maybe even breeding fish for sale….all educating the students and opening doors for future employment.

    The pool needn’t be a waste used to EDUCATE the students.

    Just – please – don’t waste any more educational tax dollars.
    In my opinion… Sharon O’Hara

  8. Sharon,

    Swimming is a required physical education class at South Kitsap High School. It has been that way since shortly after the swimming pool was completed.

    The SKHS swimming pool was constructed as part of a bond construction project, which was voted and approved by the 69.95% of voters in the 1976 bond election. According to Chris Henry’s levy and bond history chart, there were 4214 votes for the bond and 1810 against. I can’t say I voted for it because, while I lived in South Kitsap at the time, I was too young to vote.

    In a county where we are surrounded on three sides by the waters of Puget Sound and Hood Canal, I have to wonder how many young lives have been saved (since 1976) because our community had a place to offer swimming lessons to families with young children and we require our sophomores to take swimming as a PE requirement.

    To my knowledge, the community pool at SKHS is the ONLY public swimming pool in South Kitsap.

    School facilities are community facilities. Beat the drum as hard as you want on this one, Sharon. Some criticism is quite easy to take. 🙂

    Kathryn Simpson

  9. Kathryn is right, Sharon, the SKHS pool is the only public swimming pool in South Kitsap and it is desperately needed for all the reasons listed.

    Pools ARE expensive to maintain (and insure) and those may be two of the reasons why no other public swimming pools exist in the community. I know people have asked for another.

    Rest assure that it does stay full at all times, with revolving classes for small children, infants, adults, lap times, and more with first priority going, of course, to the swim teams and the high school classes. I believe at one point there was a fifth or fourth grade swimming class requirement, but it proved too expensive to maintain, with the need for busing kids to the pool.

    If we ever came to a place of such severe budget cuts that we had to give up the pool, it would be a huge, huge loss for thousands and thousands of people. A loss that would be hard to make up elsewhere.

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