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Letters to the Editor

Schools bear watching

| Thursday, March 17, 2011

With the proposed cuts to local school funding by the commonwealth, and so that parents can plan their children's education appropriately, I would suggest that they attend their next school board meeting. Each of the districts in my area stands to lose more than $2 million -- Hempfield Area, Penn-Trafford and Norwin.

There will be some hard decisions to be made. What nonmandated programs will be cut• Will it be band, sports, honors and Advanced Placement classes, kindergarten, art, music, etc.?

If not these program cuts, and if teacher layoffs occur or retiring teachers are not replaced, how much will class sizes increase• If class sizes increase, this will lower individual attention to students, perhaps even those with special needs.

Our governor, His Excellency Tom Corbett, has requested that local taxes not be raised on property, as we "have no more to give." The state could tax Marcellus shale natural gas extraction, like every state in this drilling frenzy. For the governor, this is a nonstarter.

Please go to your school board's meetings, see what these proposed cuts will mean and talk to your local superintendent and board president. You may want to contact your state representative and state senator after you hear how this proposed reduction in subsidy will be implemented.

Ed Blotzer

Penn Township, Westmoreland County

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