Sunday, April 3, 2011

Save our schools

Here in Hamilton County, NY, the situation is serious but the problems here exist throughout the USA as property taxes rise and our beloved elected officials seek to save us by attacking education.

The future of Hamilton County NY

Does Hamilton County have a future? Does anyone care?
Recent population figures, based upon the 2010 census are scary to say the least. According to those figures, the year-round population fell by 543 residents, from 5,379 in 2000 to 4,836 in 2010.If that drop were to continue at the same rate over the next ten years, the population could fall to under 4,000. But maybe more.
Maybe much more if something isn’t done to save our schools.
While many in local government seem to direct most of their concern at how much land is owned by the state, none have raised any concern about the future of our schools.
You hear talk about how important it is to save hunting camps and a couple of jobs in the forestry industry while at the same time you hear nothing from them about saving the jobs of those who teach our children nor do they say anything about the needs of our children for a quality education?
Do they care? Does everyone wish the schools with the teachers and the kids would just go away so that the school tax would just disappear with them?
But what if that wish were to come true? Then what? Would the parents of school age children be willing to see their kids bused to a distant school, one that could be 50 or more miles away.
Do you really think they would stay? Do you think anyone with children would ever considering moving to a county that didn’t have quality schools reasonably near to where they live?
These questions need to be addressed and answered because if they are not answered, there is no future for Hamilton County.
Parents with children will move out. Parents who have children will not move in. The population would nose dive far below 4,000. It would become a death spiral. State, county and town jobs would go begging as more and more families left. Businesses both profit and not for profit would close as their workers left. Even the part-time and seasonal residents would begin to leave as businesses closed, government services found it impossible to provided expected services with a shortage of workers and the all volunteer ambulance and fire departments failed to provide their emergency services because their volunteers were also part of the exodus.
This could happen if there is not a revamp in the priorities of our citizens and those we elect to provide the services we require.