By Letter to the Editor
Published April 15, 2013
I read with disappointment an article in last week's Hamilton Mountain News, detailing how the Mohawk Trail School will not be moved to the new Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) headquarters because of budgetary restrictions.
My disappointment quickly turned to anger as I read another article detailing how Education Director John Malloy and the School Board hopes to start equipping elementary students with personal tablet computers.
I find the HWDSB's priorities appalling in today's economy where, by the Board's own admission, existing schools are crumbling and schools have to fundraise for gym equipment, musical instruments and batteries; where teachers cannot provide students with their own spelling or math workbooks but can only select photocopied pages from a limited photocopying budget; and where teachers have to ask students to provide their own Kleenex.
To reward themselves with an already over-budget $32 million headquarters while schools deteriorate in front of them and students do without amazes me. To dream of giving students personal tablets when they can't afford to give them pencils and paper is dumbfounding.
As a parent and homeowner, I balance my "needs" and "wants" every day. I can't have the new car that I want because I need to pay my mortgage. Our School Board seems unable or unwilling to balance their wants and their needs.
And then to insult the taxpayer's intelligence by saying that these tablets will require minimal new spending because we will simply "reallocate funds"? As far as I know, you can only spend the same dollar once. Spending it on unnecessary "wants" only means that a "need" won't be met somewhere else.
We see the School Board do it all the time. The HWDSB needs to get their heads out of the clouds!
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