Limited education dollars
State Sen. Joe Negron, in his position as Appropriations Committee chairman, has stopped a vote on giving in-state college tuition rates to illegals. The senator, using common sense or lessons learned in Economics 101, questions “what effect will this policy have on limited financial aid funds for Florida students and taxpayers.” Indeed.
Whether Senate procedures are overturned by the governor as some suggest, at least some politicians recognize that in a time of limited economic resources that those resources should be directed to Florida’s legal students, not the illegal population.
What we know from local media is that the college subsidy for each of the illegals is nearly $15,000 per year and that there are thousands of these students in Florida who could qualify for these subsides. Apparently, though, no one knows what the program would cost per year. It is hard to believe that the Florida Senate would approve an open-ended proposal such as this which could easily cost taxpayers tens of millions of additional dollars each year.
It is doubly disappointing, because there are local politicians who are in favor of redirecting resources from legal Florida students to illegals. We would expect — hope? — that people elected locally would know and care that there are many unmet financial needs in the “educational realm” in bay-area counties, such as funding for replacement school buses, additional training and limited school construction funds, to name a few. And who thinks that area teachers believe they have adequate funding for salaries and classroom supplies? Public disagreements in the allocation of limited Bright Futures Scholarship dollars further illustrate that there are indeed limits on educational funds.
That some of our local politicians believe illegal tuition subsidies should trump the safety and learning opportunities of our students is both heartbreaking and deplorable.
Regarding “Pass immigrant tuition bill” (Our Views, April 22):
Focusing on the student and not the parent, who has already entered the U.S. illegally and remains here, collecting their own benefits, I suggest the following: The student, who is normally 18 years of age or more, should apply for and obtain their own citizenship. Then they could apply for in-state tuition, following the same rules the rest of us have to follow.
And by the way, I love where you insinuate that just because the illegal parent pays sales taxes that the students deserve to qualify for the same in-state tuition rate at universities that their peers and classmates do. I wonder whether this would apply to any U.S. citizen who travels to Florida and purchases items, thus paying a sales tax.
No balancing act required
With reference to the CSC Catholic nun who authored “Suggested conditions for the “lifted ceiling’ ” (Letter of the Day, April 21):
May I remind her that her training in the vocation of being a nun included being in a socialist environment? However, the U.S. Constitution is not a socialist document. It mandates free speech, which a political donation is. So there is no “requirement” that whatever a person of one party gives must be balanced by another citizen giving the same amount to another party.
And who says that the nonprofit world benefits society any better than those in the business of making a profit?
A sad week
Florida schoolchildren, teachers, administrators and parents were all stressed last week. Why? It was a week of high-stake’s standardized testing — FCAT. Will my child pass? Will my teacher be rewarded for all the work he or she has done with the children before, during and after school? Will the individual school buildings be rewarded or ridiculed? Will my child be able to sleep at night?
Very sad, isn’t it?
April 22 was Earth Day. The children should have been outside planting seeds and trees, picking trash up from the playground and looking at the wonders of our Earth instead of filling in ovals or clicking keys on a computer.
Of course, we want our children to be able to read, write, compute and, most of all, be able to think.
We also want our children to be able to learn to work together, play together and work for a common goal.
Let’s stop paying the testing companies and let our children be children and our teachers be teachers.
The writer is a retired teacher.