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Dictatorship or Democracy?

April 6, 2016

Recently Iowa legislators finally reached an agreement on education funding for the state of Iowa. This agreement does not fund schools adequately, and unfortunately will result in budget cuts. School boards have a lot of authority when it comes to these budget cuts. When budget cuts are made, the first things to go are usually after school programs and electives. 

An example of this is the Carlisle wellness program. Recently at a Carlisle school board meeting, there was a decision made on whether or not to cut the wellness program and teacher. Many students passionately spoke out about how important this class is, not only to their education, but also to their health. However, the school board did not listen. The board unanimously voted to cut the wellness program and its teacher, despite many students', parents', and educators' attempts to convince the school board that they were making a mistake.These school board members were elected by the people, so they need to represent the people.

Imagine if schools were to just offer the core classes: math, science, social studies, and reading...how would this prepare students for life beyond high school?? The electives and programs that are being cut are essential to schools. They help students to find their own personal interests, which can help to shape their career paths. School board members need to remember their purpose. Too often school is run like a dictatorship rather than a democracy. Students are the largest stakeholders in their education, and if school boards are going to make decisions that greatly affect students, then students need to be consulted.

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