School athletic spending questioned

May 25, 2010


Over the last three years, the Lawrence school board has given more emphasis to athletics than to academics. Lawrence has fallen from 88th to 98th to 102nd place in teachers’ average salary and benefits compared to other Kansas school districts.

According to figures compiled by the Kansas Department of Education, Lawrence paid its teachers an average of $50,170 this year while the statewide average was $53,041. How are we going to retain outstanding teachers and attract the best qualified teachers when we offer such low salaries when compared to other districts? Shawnee Mission schools paid their teachers an average of $66,806, and Blue Valley schools paid an average of $61,133, which ranked first and second in the state. Olathe averaged $57,805 and was in the top ten districts.

During this period, Lawrence built two redundant sport stadia for its two high schools. Shawnee Mission has two sports stadia to serve five high schools. Blue Valley has two stadia for four schools, and Olathe has two stadia for four schools. These schools have their priorities correct. A teacher and soccer coach for the past 11 years in Lawrence announced in December that he is going to teach in Blue Valley next year, and he will be paid over $8,000 more than his current salary here.

The Lawrence school board authorized spending up to $12.1 million on athletic fields in October 2008. That same month, the stock market was down over 40 percent from one year earlier. Two of the five largest investment banks in the nation were no longer in existence, and we were in our worst recession in 70 years.

Supt. Randy Weseman, at an early December 2008 school board meeting, warned about the state shorting school districts on payments and that the potential for less base state aid was there.

Yet in April 2009, one month after the stock market was down more than 50 percent from its peak in October 2007, the school board expanded the total cost of the sports fields, restroom and locker room renovations to $18,944,521. This total includes $5.4 million left over from the 2005 bond funds and earned interest; capital leases of $9,050,000 plus interest of $2,494,521 to be paid; and $2,000,000 of capital outlay funds. I have to credit the school board for creative financing without letting the public vote on whether they approved of all the fields. The 2005 bond did not specify athletic fields, but it was to go for school improvements at the secondary level.

At the March 8, 2010, school board meeting, 51 administrative recommendations were made for budget savings. The only athletic item of these 51 recommendations was about moving ninth-grade athletics to the high school. On April 27, the board decided to move the ninth-grade athletics one year before any other ninth-grade programs would be moved to the high school.

How this move of ninth-grade athletics was going to save money is questionable since the April 29 Journal-World quotes Lawrence High athletic director Ron Commons as saying, “I’m not sure how much money’s going to be available to buy any new uniforms or equipment to make that move.”

In March, the Lawrence Journal World reported that ninth-graders were playing on the Free State girls’ basketball team, and the team had one coach and three assistant coaches. How many classroom teachers have three assistants? Last month, I asked an employee of the school administration if the school board was going to cut any assistant coaches like they were cutting 20-30 teacher contracts. I was told that assistant coaches were needed for safety reasons. I find it contradictory for them to bring up safety issues when the school board cut busing, thus allowing children to cross dangerous intersections without crossing guards. Also, the board is cutting school nurses which is another health and safety issue.

Why not involve more children in physical activities by having more after-school intramural games and less competition with other districts?

It is my sincere hope that more of the public will become involved and informed about school issues such as the recent Save Our Schools campaign.

— Dave Kyner is a Lawrence resident.


Kookamooka 6 years ago

Here Here! Well put. Kevin Yoder and his band of merry education slashers at the State are encouraging even more education cuts in the next fiscal year. In order to stop them in their tracks, the only weapon the districts in Kansas have at their disposal is cutting boys football and boys basketball. If every district joined together and cut one of those sports, there would be substantial savings. But I have a strong suspicion that no testosterone pumping male legislator would deny someones son the opportunity to get that basketball scholarship to Duke. Pressure from the big Universities would settle Yoder and his gang down.

USD497 should really consider ways to reduce their athletic funding. A press box? Really? When LHS stadium doesn't have adequate bathrooms? So much of our press is posting stories from their Iphones. Why an entire box?

AND trim those Human Resource jobs that are a complete waste of human resource.

mom_of_three 6 years ago

While you are correct that the Olathe, Shawnee MIssion and Blue Valley share stadiums, I believe each school also has their own practice fields. LHS didn't even have those, unless you count the fields at Holcom and YSI, which I don't believe you can. Intramural games? those wouldn't satisfy most student athletes, as the level of competition would be gone.
While you give numbers about the average teacher salary in those districts, what is the average earnings of a citizen of those counties? That could make a difference in determining how much a district can pay a teacher.

LHS needs a press box, so the announcer can see and call the game, so the radio announcer can see and call the game, and so the track announcer can see and call the game. Anyone who has a field, pretty much as a press box.
Not sure about other sports, but the basketball assistant coaches also coach jv and c team, and one person can't be in two spots at once.
No, the school board probably didn't make a wise decision in building the stadiums when they did, but they were long overdue. What happens when Haskell decided it was no longer going to rent a space to the High Schools?
No one is going to be happy with the decisions the school board makes, especially when they hate athletics.
you know, one way to make money back on the stadiums is to rent those fields to tournaments. Oh, but wait, the neighbors didn't want that. Never mind.

imastinker 6 years ago

I could really admire your devotion to funding our schools if you cared half as much about making sure schools are educating our kids. I see you on all the topics about athletics for our schools, and not ever talking about how to make sure our schools are educating our kids.

That's the problem here. It's not that the state is cutting funding, it's that our school districts have such screwed up priorities. They are receiving more than enough money to educate our kids, but keep spending it on the newest facilities rather than in the classroom.

Maddy Griffin 6 years ago

I don't hate athletics but I do think we should worry MORE about whether there is enough money for books and desks. I guess my priorities are different. And explain to me why we need an elevator? Are there a lot of handicapped sports announcers?

jbiegs 6 years ago

no grammaddy there probably isn't, but there might be.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

"What happens when Haskell decided it was no longer going to rent a space to the High Schools?"

When did Haskell ever even hint at such an intention? Haskell is chronically underfunded by the Feds, and they needed the high school money to maintain their field. Think was a showplace that stadium could have become with just a fraction of the $million that were thrown at these new stadiums, with plenty of money left over to build practice fields at LHS and elsewhere.

puddleglum 6 years ago

500K on a press box?

even though I am a pretty person, I don't need to have a press box for everyone to see me.

I guess nobody really cares about education anymore. go team.

Clickker 6 years ago

Wow--the average salary for a teacher is around $50k? For working 9 months of the year, that aint bad. In fact, if the teachers unions didnt limit supply, ( you know that Bill Gates or Warren Buffett would have to go to a college in Kansas for an extra 2 years, at least, just to be able to get a degree to teach Business at West Jr. high). In fact one reason for the relatively low salaries in Lawrence is the supply of young applicants was greater in lawrence, as many KU grads sought to stay in the town after graduation. Not as many wanted to teach in Gardner as wanted to teach and hang out in Lawrence. Whether the stadiums needed to be built is debateable. At least one did, but both schools needed practice facilities. LHS was one major car wreck away from a catastrope as kids had to drive 7 miles away on country roads just to get to practice every day. Of course, athletics are the most transparent 'luxury' that everyone looks at. And Teachers salaries are the most transparent 'necessity' that everyone looks at, but I would suggest there is huge waste elsewhere, and these two things are simply not out of line.

Glo 6 years ago

Baseball players still drive to the baseball field. Guess the walk is too far!!?? Guess the car wreck (truck wreck ) will be closer.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

"For working 9 months of the year, that aint bad."

Not sure who you are referring to here, but it ain't the vast majority of teachers.

Michael Rowland 6 years ago

Are kids going to school to play games or to learn?

KawHawk 6 years ago

$500,000 for a PRESS BOX ? For an announcer to sit in a few days of the year ? What, you can't just mark off a section of the bleachers ?

This school board is so WRONG, WRONG, WRONG !

Ralph Reed 6 years ago

@Clickker, re: your 0847.

You start out with one major fallacy, "that teachers work only nine months of the year." Teachers work 12 months of the year, just like you do. What you don't see is what they're doing when your kids aren't in school. Teachers must attend classes on their own dime to maintain their teaching certificates. The district doesn't pay for that, nor do the school. K-12 teachers get a sabbatical like a university prof so they can go off and study or finish a degree. K-12 teachers put in a 12 to 14 hour day - you only see them when your kids are in school (where you've sent them to be babysat because you don't want to deal with their problems). K-12 teachers spend at least half the summer prepping for the next year. The list goes on and on.

You also pick up on the stated average teacher salary in Lawrence, the latest KSDE report I can find quotes about $48,500. You have to keep in mind that that number is not starting salary, but rather a salary figure including longevity (20 years +-) and advanced degrees (paid for on the teacher's dime). Few teachers stay in Lawrence that long.

You are correct when you say that there's an over abundance of applicants for USD 497. Students coming out of KU try to get a job here, because they like the environment. Many of them have also already started families - perhaps their spouse has not finished college yet. There are all sorts of reasons.

Your comment about Bill Gates and Warren Buffett needs to be directed at the state, not at USD 497. Contact your State BOE rep for that one.

imastinker 6 years ago

12-14 hour days? Really? That would be arriving at 7:00 AM and leaving at 9:00 PM with no break or lunches in the middle. I'm sure that has happened before, but your trying to make it sound like a regular occurrence is laughable. Teachers may do things over the summer for work, but it's not a 40 hour work week, or anything close to it. Let's not forget all the silly days that school is off during the year. I get five holidays all year, as do most private sector folks. Lots of people put in overtime too, at no additional pay. It's called salary.

Teachers should be paid very well - better than they are; but lots of teachers need to be fired and replaced with quality people before I could support that. The entire system is a glorified babysitting program built to create jobs for teachers, PARA's, administrators, and other educators; and after they are hired it's impossible to get rid of them. Has anyone seem a list of the people that work at the schools? There are more non teaching individuals there than those that are teachers.

Ralph Reed 6 years ago

I know very few teachers who don't take things home to work on: plans, grading and so on. Yes, these things do add up to a 12 to 14 hour day - at least a ten-hour day on average.

ilikestuff 6 years ago

I agree w/you stinky... I know plenty of teachers who come in @ ~ 7AM, are home no later than 4PM, done.

During summer months they may attend various workshops whereby they grade exams, "improve" curriculum, etc. This isn’t on their own dime & they receive a per diem, etc.

$50k annually is doing okay. It took years for me to reach $50k as a ** researcher, arguably as important a profession as teaching. Making $50k isn’t an assumed income..

Education seldom spends $500,000 on anything but athletics, perhaps legislators need to give them a budget and make them live w/it just like the rest of us do in the private sector.

It seems a common occurrence in the public school to receive a budget, blow through it then assume further taxation will come up w/more money to abuse. Especially when quality of their product continues to fall relative to competition from private schools which make due on far less money, lower salaries, etc.

Let’s see the quality of their product improve before we consider giving them more money.

Ricky_Vaughn 6 years ago

The man's right...these education budget cuts have to stop somewhere...

alfie 6 years ago

You or we should be grateful to Fritzel or Katzfey and the others for the donations to the sports facility; people that care

Robert Tryanski 6 years ago

Finally, a very thorough summary of the cowardly leadership, poor decision-making, and incompetent management that has taken place with these projects.

Mom of three, you consistently use this red-herring argument that LHS needed practice facilities. Okay, so why didn't the school district build practice facilities and one shared competition venue? Because they are afraid of you.

The big ticket items on these projects- astro turf for two sets of facilities, lights on all venues whether they're used primarily for practice or for games, and the excavation and construction costs for two stadiums could have been cut by more than half if the school district had listened to the majority of community members instead of pandering to the self-absorbed demands of parents. You have used the empty, emotionally manipulative tactic of pretending that safety and "the good of the kids"

Robert Tryanski 6 years ago

are the only thing that matters. Thus, you use the kids as human shields. Nice role modeling behavior.

areyousure 6 years ago

If you don't like the fact that there is money for athletic fields and press boxes, talk to your legislators. The money spent for the fields could not be used for academic purposes. It could not be used for salaries, transportation or books. Only the money that comes from the state is allowed to be used for these expenses. The intent is that school districts across the state will have the same percentage of money to spend. More prosperous districts with larger property tax bases are not able to spend a proportional larger amount on their programs. If you think that Blue Valley can spend more money currently, what would you think they could do if all monies were allocated as the district wanted.

The board accepted a donation. Yes, they probably knew that it would cost them more money than not taking it. But if they hadn't, would just as many people be lamenting the missed opportunity to use private money to improve facilities. As far as the donation, it's too bad that the donor wouldn't allow the funds to have been used for both schools. Perhaps the donor shares some of the blame for the situation.

You don't like how the board is doing things? Guess what - you can run yourself. There is an election in about a year for three of the seats. Pay a $10 filing fee, buy some yard signs and go for it. It would be nice to see enough candidates to need a run-off vote. And will more than 10% take the trouble to vote? And will more than 15 people show up at a candidate forum? There is always plenty of people who want to say what elected officials should be doing. Not that many who will take the time or trouble to back up their opinions.

areyousure 6 years ago

It only takes four votes to make a decision on the school board. Vote in three new members and all you need is one more vote. I know of at least two current members who have no ties to business and development. Maybe they would like some company.

Robert Tryanski 6 years ago

Oh and one more thing- could you stop blaming the neighbors for your empty-headed support of poor leadership and incomptent management.

Before you put forth another useless idea, why don't you do the math?

At $450 per day, which is the fee that is being charged by the district to rent the football stadium at Lawrence High School, how many days would you have to rent the field to pay off the principal ($10,000,000) on the loan the district took, without public approval, to finance this half baked idea? The answer is 22,222.222 days or 63 years.

Why don't you turn your attention instead to the real source of the problem, the misguided fools who are managing this debacle.

One of them reported that the project was coming in well under budget. Turns out, that's not true. Is he a liar, incompetent, a fool, or all of the above? You decide.

The same administrative genius said in a LJW sound off that the fields would cost $35 per month to maintain. Is he a liar, incompetent, a fool, or all of the above? You decide.

The same budget-conscious pillar of excellence claimed in public presentations that the state of the art, energy efficient lighting systems that were being installed would allow the school district to qualify for funds that would help to subsidize the building costs without realizing that those improvements didn't even qualify for the grants. Is he a liar, incompetent, a fool, or all of the above? You decide.

Oh, and now that all of these facts are finally being discovered, this person's boss continues to rely on his complete lack of sense and track record of incompetence. So is the superintendent liar, incompetent, a fool, or all of the above? You decide.

Clickker 6 years ago

I always see ladies ( and guys) drive around and around the parking lot at my health club just trying to get a spot a few feet closer.

Robert Tryanski 6 years ago

One final note-

I'm beginning to think that the full-time bloggers who keep insisting that our concerns are invalid because there are two pots of money must be school board members.

WE GET IT! There are two pots of money, one for salaries, light bulbs and field trips, the other for replacing roofs and improving school buildings that the board would like to dump like a 5 year old Wal-Mart so they can build a super center.

Here's the big problem. The school district will be spending $1.25 million dollars pet year for the next ten years to pay back the loan it took to build these facilities it couldn't afford. Prior to this, it cost the district $85,000 per year in rental fees to play football. So what the brain trust decided to do was spend $1.25 million dollars, money that could be used for capital improvements every year, to save $85,000+ (I realize there were rental fees for softball and soccer, but how much of a difference could that make?) out of the operating budget.

The Board might find it hard to believe, but members of the public do know how to read a spreadsheet. To sum up- the capital fund is not being properly managed. In fact, some would argue that it is deliberately being manipulated to create a false sense of urgent need to have another bond. Good luck with that!

imastinker 6 years ago

I couldn't agree more! The two pot analogy is too much for me!

The school board actually has about a dozen pots, most likely. They decide every year how much to put into each of them. The folks that defend them say they can't take money out of one pot and put it into another, but it's still the same people at fault for spending money foolishly.

areyousure 6 years ago

So if someone doesn't agree with you, they must be a school board member? Your concerns aren't invalid. They are yours and everyone's opinions are valid. But there is always two sides of a issue.

alfie 6 years ago

As far as the donation, it's too bad that the donor wouldn't allow the funds to have been used for both schools. Perhaps the donor shares some of the blame for the situation.

Are you kidding me? when i donate money to a church or school it goes where i or we want it to go, a lot of people donate all the time for a specific cause

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

It appears jack-o's crusade de jure has been identified.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years ago

And this was your mindless, pointless sniping (for the moment.)

grimpeur 6 years ago

"The 2005 bond did not specify athletic fields, but it was to go for school improvements at the secondary level."


September 28, 2004 The bond likely will include money to improve the junior high schools and the science labs at Lawrence High School, and likely will be about $40 million.

Several board members said athletic needs were important but didn't seem to be as big of a priority as educational needs at this time.

"It's not that athletic facilities are bad -- they're good," said board member Rich Minder. "I just don't see a football field making us more efficient."

October 10, 2004 While ideas and opinions have been tossed around for a new bond referendum, details of what will be included haven't been nailed down. But it has been said the bond issue could be from $40 million to $45 million.

October 18, 2004 Based on the current $53.6 million proposed bond plan, about $3.6 million would be spent at LHS to renovate science rooms, locker rooms and add a new entrance onto the gym. Of the $3.6 million, about $810,000 would go toward renovating science rooms.

February, 10, 2005 The group presented information prepared by the school district that estimates the $63 million in improvements would increase the district's property tax rate by 2.25 mills from 46.72 mills to 48.97 mills.

Not one of these stories, nor any others between Sept. 04 and March 05, states the need for athletic field improvements. Not one. In fact, indications are to the contrary, as Minder notes above.

anon1958 6 years ago

Well this is a community (Lawrence) where a significant number of people did not want to open a second high school purely because they feared for their precious football tradition. This kind of nonsense is exactly why the sport fanatic mentality in this town, is ironically held by true losers. Lawrence is so full of sport facility apologists it is a wonder the place does not spontaneously explode.

The people that argue for traditional sports funding because it is supposedly integral to teaching students about competition appear to me to be so dense that they must also surely be members of the Tea Party.

Richard Heckler 6 years ago

Both high schools had practice fields already.

This whole deal came from the Chamber by way of Bonnie Lowe who introduced PLAY. My best guess is that some out there believe this $50 millon PLAY project will help sell houses. Still hoping to ignite yet another "boom town economy" in spite of the fact that this mentality took down our national economy.

As we know Lawrence citizens were very cool to the idea of PLAY : http://www2.ljworld.com/polls/2007/may/should_city_spend_20_million_or_more_play_project/

Knowing that citizens were not willing to support such reckless spending how in the world could the powers that be disguise PLAY and get around the taxpayers? How many times have we taxpayers heard " it's all for the children". Next thing WE know PLAY has become a USD 497 project as Tom Bracciano noted and he should know.

Then there comes a way to skirt taxpayer approval on a $20 million project. Why in the world would taxpayer approval be avoided?

The $50 million PLAY project will be completed with a $25 million field house. Why does Lawrence need this?

Meanwhile the Parks department is spending millions on the Clinton Lake Regional Park project. More tax dollars going to athletics.

How will taxpayers ever get their money back on THESE investments?

Then city hall says there is no money to rehab city sidewalks to make them safe for walking. Hmmmmmmmm.

City Hall says there is no money to improve and provide legitimate maintenance to our very busy library. Hmmmmmmmmmm.

How much will this new athletic endeavor ADD to the USA 497 operations budget???? It did cost $50,000 to instruct someone how to maintain bogus turf... if my memory serves me well.

Still a very big question in my mind: Why in the world would taxpayer approval be avoided? Who's idea was this?

Richard Heckler 6 years ago

Anyone impressed with LHS bleachers yet? What a disaster!

Katara 6 years ago

Certainly not to unemployed architects that file frivolous lawsuits that waste even more taxpayer money and that do not pay a penny of property tax themselves because their mother's trust owns their house.

Katara 6 years ago


You got a frog in your pocket or are you reverting to the Royal We now, cool?

Katara 6 years ago

Not a property owner = not a plaintiff.

Pays the mortgage ≠ property owner

Property owner = name on the deed

donjuan ≠ property owner = not a plaintiff

Katara 6 years ago

Gosh, I would think the person with a medical/or mental problem would be the one who continues to register to a site they have been bounced from multiple times.

Katara 6 years ago

Perhaps less riding on the bike will help get rid of that horrible case of the 'roids you apparently have judging by the tenor of your posts.

If you like, I'll be more than happy to find you a coupon for some Preparation H.

Wouldn't want you to have to pay full price for a product you obviously are in desperate need of.

Katara 6 years ago

Doubt it. The time lost biking everywhere would cost me more. Not to mention the complete impracticality of transporting a family on a bicycle or purchasing necessities for said family or the lack of shower facilities at my employer so my spandex stench doesn't kill off my co-workers.

Katara 6 years ago


Of course, mothers are never busy. All mothers just sit around the house munching on bons bons & watching soap operas just waiting for the time to pass to jump into their monster sized truck to drive their children up the block. And all mothers never work outside the home providing for their families. Nope. No siree. Those damn women - just so lazy!

Is that how it works for everyone who is not you?

Katara 6 years ago

Gosh, way back in the day?

That's your issue? These aren't the days of the pregnant & barefoot little woman anymore?

And, of course, the fathers have no responsibility in raising their offspring. Nope. No siree!

Gosh, whatever would June do without a man like you around, Ward?

Katara 6 years ago

Intelligent conversation on LJW?

That's unpossible!

Katara 6 years ago

And you're participating in it, why?

Katara 6 years ago

Really? Sure looks like some wild speculations, half baked conspiracy theories and possibly some outright lies happening that were being discussed well before I made an appearance.

Is that what you call an intelligent discussion?

Why would biking as transportation be seen as demeaning? Seems to me you could be projecting here. It simply is not a feasible option for many, no matter how much you insist it is.

Katara 6 years ago

What drama about the spandex? You seem very sensitive about the spandex. What is up with that?

I don't think you really get the concept that your way make work for you but is not feasible for many others. People have different lives from you. They will always have different lives than you.

Why does that anger you so? Talk about out of control rage... you are so busy condemning others' lifestyles, it is amazing you have time for yours.

Katara 6 years ago

Oh another one who blames everyone else.

It is always someone else's fault.

Always about what you don't have or don't get or what others are doing that you disapprove of.

But you can't do something as simple as being an actual participant to make changes in the system you are unhappy with.

Katara 6 years ago

Yes, you want someone else to do the work for you.

You are not interested in doing anything productive. You are interested in complaining because this is no longer the 1950s and things have changed in ways you disapprove of.

You want to keep on going on about coupons and what you believe I do or don't do with them to deflect the fact that you are not willing to put your money where your mouth is.

You made a comment about PLAY. I haven't seen a question about it. It may be buried in one of the posts.

If you are that tired, do something about it.

Katara 6 years ago

Those are good questions for someone who is interested in running for school board or state legislator to ask.

You don't have to be rich to run. All you need is your idea and if your idea appeals to others, you will have support. It really is that simple. Elections (particularly local ones) are won that way all the time.

How do you think the social conservatives made such leaps and bounds into where they are now? Are you going to go full on conspiracy and tell me that they all had rich and powerful backers?

You will do much better in getting your idea out if you actively do so rather than gripe on a newspaper forum. It is such a copout. It is a lame excuse. It is passive and it reeks of victimhood. It is the reason why we see such voter apathy.

And what is the worst that would happen? You lose an election? So? Your idea(s) still get out in the public realm for discussion and thought rather than just languishing slow death here on the LJW forum.

Katara 6 years ago

I dunno. How about you stopping signing up on a forum that has bounced you what now? 18-19 times?

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

Relax and have a popsicle, juan. It's a cool and fruity treat on a spring day.

Katara 6 years ago

Duh. It is called the LJW comment history.

Katara 6 years ago

That's great! So the trust has the tax liability. Which means that the person actually living in the house is not on the hook for the taxes. No different than a renter and no more the property rights of a renter... which means the person cannot be a party to a lawsuit involving property owners and presenting oneself as such a person with that capability = attempted fraud + frivolous lawsuit = wasted taxpayer monies


jkealing (Jonathan Kealing) says…


I've warned you privately, now I'll warn you publicly. You do not have bearded_gnome's name correct. If you don't immediately cease to attempt to out an anonymous user, your account will be banned. In addition, I will immediately ban any account I suspect to be created by you without notice, warning or further cause. This is your final warning.

Jonathan Kealing Online editor

So I guess we won't be seeing you around much longer.

Katara 6 years ago

Way to miss the point. Not surprising though.

donjuan cannot be a plaintiff to a suit regarding this. donjuan is not a property owner - just as any renters in the area cannot be plaintiffs as well. donjuan cannot claim be to a party to the lawsuit under these conditions even though donjuan is doing so now.

donjuan doesn't give a rat's patootie if this affects Lawrence taxpayers or not. donjuan doesn't care how it affects Lawrence schoolchildren. donjuan is more concerned about what he can get out of USD497 for personal property improvements.

Ask his neighbors if you doubt.

Katara 6 years ago

I guess you make the big assumption that I am thrilled about how the school district spent its money. But you are pretty big on making huge and incorrect assumptions about folks here on the forum so no surprise there.

Has it ever occurred to you that the fault lies with the people who set the budget over in Topeka? The school district works with what it has and by the "buckets" the money is in. If state law says you can't use a certain fund for other things, wouldn't it be much more productive to work on changing that law rather than complaining about how the school district is spending money in ways you disapprove of?

If you want more money or more flexibility with the monies already given, talk to your state legislator. The school board cannot change state law for you.

Katara 6 years ago

All that has been discussed already? So why is everyone wasting their time yadda-ing yadda-ing on the LJW forum about how the school district is pure evil?

This guy isn't discussing the issues. He slinging a lot of unfounded accusations - kickbacks for contractors? Secret deals with the board? And I'm the one who needs to be scared of a libel suit? I've pointed out fact. donjuan is not a property owner and the claims he makes that is are complete misrepresentation. He is not party and cannot be. Talk to his neighbors. Many are not thrilled with how he mislead them in order to get into a position for his personal gain.

Pretty funny about you chiding someone else about "dissecting someone's personal life" when you regularly do that regarding many folks' opinions about their personal choices.

Lecture the forum about evil cars. Lecture the forum about evil coupons. Parents that like sports don't love their kids. People who don't bike are killing the environment and are destroying society as we know it.

You presume some of us on here care to hear your claim on the Absolute Truth on everything.

But if it makes you feel more like a man...

Katara 6 years ago

Yup. Because if people don't live exactly how you preach, we aren't concerned about the kids. Who are you taking pointers from? Karl Rove?

Again, if you are unhappy with how the schools must use their funds, take it up with the legislature. Vote out the anti-education jerks. Run your own candidate. Run for office yourself.

It really is much more productive to go to the source of the problem rather than railing at the symptoms. Not sure why this is such a difficult concept for you.

Regardless whether you like it or not, athletic fields & the "glorified garage & prison grounds" were improvements. Just because they were not the improvements you personally envisioned does not make it that the school board pulled the wool over your eyes.

Katara 6 years ago

Never let facts get in the way of a good rant.

If you care to review my post history, you will be sure to note that I have never stated that my way is the best way. I have been very, very clear that people should do what is best for them and their families.

We all have choices. You can choose to be an active participant in education or you can choose to be a passive complainer.

Oh wait! Is that statement too authoritarian for you?

Katara 6 years ago

I have pointed out that you can be an active participant in the direction of education which is very relevant to this discussion. It is too bad that you don't wish to do that and rather use the internet (a bastion of consumerism & therefore the ultimate evil & chock full of your hypocrisy) to complain about how things are not how you want them to be.

Further hypocrisy on your part is you continuing to assert that I am not discussing the issue while you want to talk about what I say about coupons. Or maybe your rants in previous posts today about things that are not about athletic fields.

BTW, "Mr. I'm upset about the lack of academics", it is "illusion". If you are going to lament about how academics are lacking in our educational system today and how great things were back in your day, you probably should be more vigilant in your editing.

It is good marketing, you know.

Katara 6 years ago

LOL! Either I'm a sorority girl or a jock or a soccer mom! Please make up your mind which stereotype you want to go with.

This man's personal life cost taxpayers money too. This man misrepresented himself to his neighbors, to the taxpayers & to the school district.

This man claims to have been a plaintiff in the lawsuit regarding the fields. He is not and cannot be but continues to claim it.

This man is looking for personal property improvement at the expense of the school district so his payout will be even bigger after his mother kicks the bucket.

Keep on blathering about coupons and what you perceive my behavior to be. It does not change the fact that you refuse to be an active participant in making the changes to the school district, education and anything related to happen.

Katara 6 years ago

At least I can maintain more than 1-2 days of post history before being bumped (again and again and again ...).

Katara 6 years ago

My children are active in sports, especially since gym classes are given so little time. I like Parks & Rec for the variety of activities they offer in a fairly non-competitive way. They are big on learning how to play the game rather than focusing on just winning the game.

I think sports are good physical exercise. Certainly you would agree that it is a good thing? Especially how with your constant condemnation of the stereotypical lazy, fat American.

I am not sure how you get bullying from stating that you too can be responsible for how things are run. There is nothing to prevent you from contacting your state legislator to convince them to change state laws regarding education. There is nothing to prevent you from running your own candidates. There is nothing to prevent you from running for state legislator or from running for school board.

You can be an active participant in the direction of education or you can just be a passive whiner. It is obvious which route you are choosing to take here.

Isn't it funny how when people point out that you can make changes and tell you some of the ways change can be accomplished, it is called bullying?

Sounds to me that you are not that big of a fan personal responsibility. It seems that you rather complain about something rather than actually get off your bike seat to do something to get the change you envision.

Delusional is thinking that complaining on a forum is actually going to make a difference. Great for venting. Not so good for accomplishing much, though.

Katara 6 years ago

Wow. You are giving up before you've even tried.

Somehow I doubt the Founding Fathers would have advocated that route. They were most definitely active participants. They did way more than circulate pamphlets.

People of your ilk? Sounds like you have a self esteem problem.

Talk about a copout. You aren't going to know what change you can accomplish if you don't try.

Katara 6 years ago

On a basic level, we agree here. Those are good things that you list but the reason we don't see those things is because people are not willing to do something about it. You are the perfect example.

You want to blame marketing. You want to blame the lack of education. You want to blame sports.

These are excuses for your lack of participating in making change happen. And they are poor excuses.

You can make fun of my being busy but the reason I am is because I choose to participate.

Katara 6 years ago

Great movie!

You must have missed the rest of the movie, though.

Spoiler Alert! Pedro (the underdog) won.

So tell us again how pointless it is to make an attempt to participate in the change you desire?

P.S. Your mom goes to college.

Katara 6 years ago

Dude, you just basically stated that you are waiting for your mother to kick off so you can have the house!

That is all sorts of wrong.

svenway_park 6 years ago

Cool/Ariadne/Bronze/etc , you really should have stayed in law school for a full year. Because you still don't understand. The deed to your house is part of a trust. The trust owns the house.

You may live in the house, but you do not own the house. Your mother's trust does.

Your lack of understanding about this is also why you wildly misinterpret laws of all sorts, which led to your frivolous law suit.

Katara 6 years ago

Mmmm... breach of fiduciary duty from a beneficiary. That's nice.

jayhawklawrence 6 years ago

I like the new fields. They are beautiful, practical and the kids love them.

I did not like havng to go to Haskell to watch a game. The kids needed their own fields.

Too many people are looking for something evil in all of this and it just isn't there. They waited a long time, too long, to get these improvements.

We should just be proud that we have two of the greatest high schools in the state of Kansas, I think the greatest. We also have the best kids.

We will get through these tough times and then we can focus on other areas.

independant1 6 years ago

huh? an optimist? wut are you doing on this forum? more power to ya

independant1 6 years ago

thought for ahile i was going to have to double my dose today

honestone 6 years ago

A well thought out, reasoned letter. Isn't it sad that NONE of the school board members give a damn about the education of our children so these well crafte words will fall on deaf ears. ...and the different pot of money issue will come up when they close a school because it needed "capital improvement"

svenway_park 6 years ago

of course, since donjuan could not hack anything above a BGS, didn't even receive an architecture degree, we will listen to him interpret laws.

But it seems that he now wants to charge public officials of "kickbacks"

He doesn't even understand that he doesn't have ownership of the house he lives in.

svenway_park 6 years ago

Try to file a deed for sale. You by yourself can not. You don't have legal title to the property It is that simple.

Jonathan Kealing 6 years ago

OK, first, slander is the spoken word. This is all written, so it's libel. Second, criminal libel is almost NEVER pursued. Is there civil liability? Sure. But don't talk about criminal slander when 1) it doesn't apply and 2) it's almost never pursued.

svenway_park 6 years ago

Yea Jonathan. When you promise to banish someone.... mean it. Because the arky-tech isn't ever going to follow the rules.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

You're telling Jonathan how to run this board? That is major LOLZ.

Glo 6 years ago

Swenway sent another discussion down the toilet with his constant attacks and personal vendetta. He should be ignored, but is not. This school district consultant needs to be banned, as do others. Meaninful discussion has turned personal and is revolting. For the sake for free discussion, please enforce rules.

svenway_park 6 years ago

Have a popsicle, donjuan. It is a cool and fruity treat on such a hot day.

sherlock 6 years ago

Journal World: Why do you let some posters point fingers at others so that its known who they are ? I sure thought this was against the rules? It looks as tho some have more power than others when they blog? Funny me I thought this thread was School spending questioned, NOT who does what for a living in their personal lives. Also Sven-way Park do you work for the school? Sure sounds as tho! Are the rules enforced ever? They are certainly listed.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

You're telling Jonathan how to run this board? That is major LOLZ.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

What's the shortest lifespan for any of the arky-tech's identities?

Worth repeating: • jkealing (Jonathan Kealing) says… bronze- I've warned you privately, now I'll warn you publicly. You do not have bearded_gnome's name correct. If you don't immediately cease to attempt to out an anonymous user, your account will be banned. In addition, I will immediately ban any account I suspect to be created by you without notice, warning or further cause. This is your final warning. Jonathan Kealing Online editor

––––– How has donjuan lasted this long Jonathan?

Katara 6 years ago

Jonathan is letting him stay on for the lulz, snap_pop_no_crackle. There can't be any other explanation.

independant1 6 years ago

kill the programs and put the money in a lock box

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

Relax and have a popsicle, juan. It's a cool and fruity treat on a spring day.

svenway_park 6 years ago

“Sven Alstrom, a Lawrence architect who owns a home south of LHS, said he didn't object to the field proposals but said the project needs to include a properly engineered drainage system.”

svenway_park 6 years ago

If a neighbor of the athletic fields continues to use these fields as his personal dog-poop-park, he really can't be too concerned about the health of the students or public using the same, or "off-gassing."

sherlock 6 years ago

why is the JW forum letting you use proper names on this blog Svenway_Park? Isnt this against the rules of the JW? Again I ask do you work for the school/or the city/ JW? Jonathan isnt this against the rules to put a posters real name on here? So why is it still on the blogs? Not Good.

Jonathan Kealing 6 years ago

No, it is not against the rules to use proper names. I have no idea what would make you think that. It's against the rules to out an anonymous user, but that's it. Mentioning someone by name is perfectly acceptable.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

Worth repeating"

"jkealing (Jonathan Kealing) says…

bronze- I've warned you privately, now I'll warn you publicly. You do not have bearded_gnome's name correct. If you don't immediately cease to attempt to out an anonymous user, your account will be banned. In addition, I will immediately ban any account I suspect to be created by you without notice, warning or further cause. This is your final warning. Jonathan Kealing Online editor

––––– How has DonJuan lasted this long Jonathan?

aka: susanneg, Bronze, Coltrane, Spiderman, Cool...and many other forgetable names."

KU_Dude 6 years ago

jkealing (Jonathan Kealing) says…

bronze- I've warned you privately, now I'll warn you publicly. You do not have bearded_gnome's name correct. If you don't immediately cease to attempt to out an anonymous user, your account will be banned. In addition, I will immediately ban any account I suspect to be created by you without notice, warning or further cause. This is your final warning. Jonathan Kealing Online editor

––––– How has DonJuan lasted this long Jonathan?

aka: susanneg, Bronze, Coltrane, Spiderman, Cool...and many other forgetable names.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

Tag! You're it! jkealing (Jonathan Kealing) says…

bronze- I've warned you privately, now I'll warn you publicly. You do not have bearded_gnome's name correct. If you don't immediately cease to attempt to out an anonymous user, your account will be banned. In addition, I will immediately ban any account I suspect to be created by you without notice, warning or further cause. This is your final warning. Jonathan Kealing Online editor

––––– How has DonJuan lasted this long Jonathan?

aka: susanneg, Bronze, Coltrane, Spiderman, Cool...and many other forgetable names.

svenway_park 6 years ago

Sherlock, I am not employed by the city, the school district, the LJW, or am I involved in the architectural/design/construction trades.

Glo 6 years ago

Haven't you acted as a consultant for the district?

svenway_park 6 years ago

Donjuan. Read the postings of Cool, Bronze, Ariadne, rusty2, jaguar, Coltrane, Spiderman and many others and see just where incivility comes from. Oh, that's write. You wrote them.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

All the posting of those other identities were, of course, deleted when those other identities were disappeareded. As will all of juan's posts when his number is up.

MyThoughts 6 years ago

What a perceptive, intelligent, well thought out letter. Thank you, Mr. Kyner.

Flap Doodle 6 years ago

Relax and have a popsicle, juan. It's a cool and fruity treat on a spring day.

independant1 6 years ago

need some in-school intramural activities too. physical activity should be part of primary/secondary/college culture. everyday. not just for the select few in competitive sports. regardless of ability.

makes one a better person

Flap Doodle 5 years, 12 months ago

Worth repeating: • jkealing (Jonathan Kealing) says… bronze- I've warned you privately, now I'll warn you publicly. You do not have bearded_gnome's name correct. If you don't immediately cease to attempt to out an anonymous user, your account will be banned. In addition, I will immediately ban any account I suspect to be created by you without notice, warning or further cause. This is your final warning. Jonathan Kealing Online editor

––––– How has donjuan lasted this long Jonathan?

Flap Doodle 5 years, 12 months ago

It appears that donjuan has joined the ranks of cool/bronze/spiderman, etc in the ranks of the disappeareded.

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