All content, of both the original Brookfield7.com and this blog, is written from my point of view and is my opinion. I believe it to be accurate at the time it is written. ~ Kyle Prast, Brookfield resident since 1986
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posted by KYLE PRAST | 9:15 AM
I am still drafting a comprehensive confidential response - yes I too worry about repercussions for expressing my opinion in public - isn't that a shame. But this one tidbit, I couldn't wait to pass on.Attention to detail.We are all to belive the administration and board have focused on attention to detail, this is the best/most appropriate high school solution. If attention to detail is so important, why does district PR, direct from Andy Smith, tell us to go to www.elmbrookschools.com - the site does not exist.If that's the level of attention they have paid, I can't believe this referendum in any way, shape or form is built on sound judgement.
Kyle,Take a look at 3/26 Journal Sentinel sports page. You will see that at Malcolm X Academy the track team runs in the school halls. (Just like our students.) The Journal used our students picture as a reason to vote yes for the referendum. Maybe they should call for upgrades at other schools that have students run indoors.
This one was my favorite Gibson dodge - what an insult to a senior citizen of our community that pays his wage...Q: Barb of Brookfield, WI - How do you address the concerns of retirees and seniors, who make up the large majority of the voting population in the district, about their ability to stay in their homes in the face of the massive tax increases we've experienced for school building. If the referendum passes, I project the school portion of my tax bill will increase by $650, based on the confirmed and projected spending. This will require at least $ 1,000 of pre-tax income to pay for the increases. My retirement pension, after deducting the health insurance premium increase, has gone down to under $ 20,000 a year. An additional $ 1,000 to pay school tax increases may mean I cannot afford to age in place in my home. I know others in similar situations. It seems that the school board is oblivious and insensitive to what the district voters can really afford. Not everyone is a public employee with paid health care and automatic pay raises. A: Matt Gibson - The District understands that there will be a tax increase for debt service. This increase is $164 for the first referendum question on an average home and $27 for the second referendum question on an average home. Costs to homes above or below the average may be calculated on the Referendum Calculator Worksheet found on the District website: www.elmbrookschools.org.
Kyle - Thanks for your valuable service to the community. I think people might be willing to vote for school plans that allow for the following points.1. Honesty with the residents. Eliminate deceptive tactics. Appeal to logic instead of emotion. For starters eliminate “sale prices” such as stating $99.99 million instead of $100 million (like I’m buying a gallon of gas). When I see tactics like this , I ask “What other deceptions are involved ?”. The title “Dr.” doesn’t precede my name but I did graduate from college and hold a job that requires analytical thinking.2. Respect for our senior citizens. Maybe if Wisconsin wasn't such a tax hell, those that haven't left and don't have plans to leave, would be willing to vote yes for a reasonable, affordable plan. As the Beatles sang “You’ll be older too...”.3. Respect for disparities in income. While Elmbrook is the home to many affluent people it is also home to two wage earner families (sometimes the second wage is $7.50/hr.).These people have put their every effort into maintaining a modest home and keeping their family afloat. A few hundred dollars is not chump change to these families.4. Pay off existing debt and don't keep refunding it. More or our dollars should go into the improvements instead of to lenders.5. Listen to people, such as the New Berlin school board, that are willing to help and give the benefit of their experience. Their method of financing projects might not provide for instant gratification but it is responsible and doesn't teach our kids to live off credit cards.6. In general put needs over wants. There may be a valuable lesson on life in not obtaining your every want. Life will go on if Johnny and Jennie don’t have covered parking for their late model cars.
I am so disappointed with the lack of concern for the quality of our schools by Brookfield residents. My husband and I moved here to raise our children because of the impression that the public schools were of high caliber. I had grown up in the Thiensville-Mequon (Homestead HS) district and had always considered Elmbrook to be the gold standard in the area. Clearly, that has changed dramatically since I was in high school. Districts all around us are supporting their schools and their students to a much greater extent than we are. This can't continue. At the rate that this is proceeding, my kids will likely be out of high school well before any referendum is passed. Will I still continue to vote for it? Of course I will. It is a critical step for this community, whether you currently have kids in public school or not. Take a look at some of the high school facilities in the area. Our schools have become an embarrassment and a hindrance to our students' development and achievement. And yes, lack of adequate athletic facilities does indeed affect academics. You cannot separate the two. Our students deserve better. Please take the time to educate yourselves to the real needs that exist and vote "Yes" for our students.
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