As you probably know, Oklahoma is in the middle of massive education funding crisis. As a result, school districts are having to make some really tough decisions on what activities, events and teaching positions to keep, which ones to cut and which ones to abandon in the country like a dog. Other schools districts, though, are taking the more simple, easy, popular with students way to save money. They're just closing school early.
A state budget shortfall has prompted one suburban Tulsa school district to end classes six days earlier to save about $100,000.The Tulsa World reports Bixby Public Schools is dealing with a $630,000 shortfall and has reduced travel for teachers and students, spent less on supplies and implemented a hiring freeze.The final day of school in the district will now be May 12.Earlier this month, state officials announced that the revenue failure for the current fiscal year had worsened. A 4 percent, an across-the-board cut was added to a previously announced 3 percent cut for all state-appropriated agencies.Common education was cut by $46.7 million in December, and an additional $62.3 million was slashed this month.
Seriously, today's kids get all the breaks. When has Oklahoma not been in an education finding crisis? This isn't exactly a new thing. When I was a kid in the 80s and 90s, teachers were still underpaid, classrooms were still overcrowded and textbooks were still 20-years-old. Guess what? I still had to go to school. They didn't let us out early. If anything, they'd make us stay an extra day or two to make up for snow days.
Hehe. Just kidding. We didn't have snow days back then. We had to walk to school in the snow and ice uphill both ways.
All envy and jealousy aside, I think this is a smart plan. Let's be honest, is there a more worthless time on the calendar than the last week of school? Everyone from the kids to the teachers to even the old man walking his dog by the playground are mailing it in at that point. I think every school district in the state should just follow Bixby's lead and shut things down a week early. How could it hurt? Is five extra days of being bored in a classroom going to make a difference? It will save money and save the time we waste driving slow through school zones (except the ones on N. Classen that everyone speeds through). The only drawback is the second to last week of school now becomes the final week of school. I would say to cut that week, too, but then you'd have to cut the next week, and well, then it becomes a never-ending cycle of cutting the last week of school. It would go on forever like a painting of man holding a painting of man holding a painting of man holding a painting of man holding a painting of man. Make sense?