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Jessica Gwozdz Photography » Blog

6/52 – Emotion

I know this is not a very visually exciting picture but when I thought about this week’s project theme of “emotion”, this is all I could think about.

My kids’ school district has two referrenda going to ballot next month. Our district has not gone for any referrendum since the 1960’s. We are long overdue for one, and at this point the district has exhausted all other methods of reducing costs.

The teachers’ association has already made concessions with respect to their own salaries and elimination of tuition reimbursement. There have already been reductions in staff. The school now outsources food and the new service is so inferior to the in-house cooking from last year that my kids bring a home lunch every day. My kindergarten son is an advanced reader and I learned last week at parent teacher conferences (which took place in the art room because the heater in my son’s classroom was broken) that my son will be tested for placement in the advanced reading program. He is all excited by this but the testing has not yet happened because the school only has a part-time librarian now.

The money that the district is asking the tax payers for is simply to bring the school building to a state of adeqaucy. We are not talking state of the art here, we are talking about basic things like a functioning furnace and clean clear water. I won’t bore you with all of the details, but this photo above is the list of the cuts that will be made immediately if the March vote is “no”. I really cannot read this list without getting all emotional. No full day kindergarten, no library, no clubs or athletics, reduction of art and muscic, reduction of staff. I am getting choked up typing this so I am going to stop.

But since I hate to end a blog post on a sour note, I will share a happy picture of my son celebrating his 100th day of kindergarten yesterday.  He jumped off the bus wearing this crown and waving a big hundred dollar bill.  Truly a kodak moment.


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Sabrina - Oh wow, that is stressful. Did I eve mention I used to teach high school? Funding decisions seem to always be made by the least informed and impacted by the actual education taking place. I hope the referrenda pass. Adorable image of your son!! Yippee!

Jamie B - Hey there! This caught my eye because my husband is a teacher in Oak Park and they just went through this exact same thing. Very scary. Their list of cuts looked very similar! It passed, so there’s definitely hope! p.s. I don’t think I realized you, me, & Tracy all had Kindergartners! Very cool! Adorable pic 🙂

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