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Lawrence schools may ask voters to OK a half-mill tax increase to raise $650,000 to give employees a 1.5% pay increase, less than the 3% inflation rate. Without the money, raises could be less than 1%. Would you vote for the tax increase?

Response Percent Votes
65% 335
31% 161
Not sure.
3% 19
Total 515


za 9 years, 8 months ago

and now I eat my words.

thanks tvc.

Gareth Skarka 9 years, 8 months ago

Wanting to give them a pay increase less than the rate of inflation, and the kneejerk idiots still vote "No."

....and then they wonder why our schools are in such bad shape. Dumb. Dumb, dumb, dumb. It's called "cause and effect," kids.

ForThePeople 9 years, 8 months ago

Sorry, but many people footing the bill here aren't seeing pay raises themselves...where is the money going to come from for them? I believe teachers need raises, but taxpayers that aren't getting cost of living raises just aren't able to put out. I spend plenty already on fundraisers and such for my childrens school...every month there is something! It's time for the city and the school board to priortize their finances, just as the rest of us have to!!!

fu7il3 9 years, 8 months ago

If you don't pay your teachers, don't complain when your kids are idiots. Teachers aren't paid enough for what they do anyway. They don't get raises every year either. We'll spend 20 bucks on a Brittany Spears album, but won't pay someone to give our kids an education. And people wonder why the country's priorities are out of whack.

newsreader 9 years, 8 months ago

I wouldn't have a problem voting for it, but I have such little faith in the money actually making its way to teachers... I have the feeling it will stay towards the top. Now, if they said they were giving a raise to all teachers and admins making less then $80,000 a year or something; I'd be all for that.

I dont want to give the Superintendent and his "advisors" that raise.

ForThePeople 9 years, 8 months ago

Anonymous user

fu7il3 (Anonymous) says:

If you don't pay your teachers, don't complain when your kids are idiots. Teachers aren't paid enough for what they do anyway. They don't get raises every year either. We'll spend 20 bucks on a Brittany Spears album, but won't pay someone to give our kids an education. And people wonder why the country's priorities are out of whack.

While I totally agree with you on one hand, on the other, where do you think those of us that already have the belt cinched to the last notch are going to come up with the money? Some of us DON'T spend 20 bucks on a Brittney Spears cd, nor any other for that matter. As I said before, many, many, MANY of us are NOT getting raises yearly or even every other year and are doing our best to keep up with inflation. Yea, it's a drop in the bucket, but the drops are coming from everything to electricity, gas, food..and I could go on and on.

absolutelyridiculous 9 years, 8 months ago


Randy. I will personally buy you and school board a bunch of pencil sharpeners. I'm having to slash my budget, you need to slash yours.

With 21% of our students in poverty, that means 21% aren't paying the crazy school fees.

The School Board's "whatever it takes" mentality, needs to change to "we'll have to operate within our means"

Let the voting begin.

za 9 years, 8 months ago

We leave our children in the hands of teachers every day for 7-8 hours and aren't willing to give them a less than 2% raise?

Lots of proffesions aren't getting raises this year, but few are as underpaid as teachers.

fu7il3 9 years, 8 months ago

It is a good article, but a bit skewed in some ways. I was an education student at one time. There was an incident where teachers could not legally strike and were told that they didn't need a raise because they only worked from 8:30 to 3:30 9 months a year. So, the teachers stopped doing any work that they were doing off the clock, so to speak. It practically shut the school down.

I know that a lot of people are feeling the crunch. Part of the problem with the system has always been that the schools with the most money are the schools were the richest kids go because they are in the areas that create the greatest revenue. I just think it is sad that some of the careers that pay the most money in our society are the most useless to the furthering of our society itself.

SFASU 9 years, 8 months ago

Sorry, the article is WAY skewed! I also do not think the "average" teacher in Kansas is making 45,000/year!

Mkh 9 years, 8 months ago

As I said before, take back the $500,000 for the video-survelliance systems and give the teachers a pay raise or use it to get better teachers. The City and School boards need to learn some fiscal responsibility. Obviously that is going to take some new members to achieve.

tvc 9 years, 8 months ago

It is not. That was the national average.

Any source is going to have a slant. Everyone wants to make more. Hell, I want a raise right now and another in 6 months. I was a teacher, and felt I was underpaid. I work another career now and realize I was not!

Teachers are not good teachers because of pay or lack of pay. I went into teaching in spite of the pay, and no amount of money would keep me there. The problems with public education are far greater than money.

Mkh 9 years, 8 months ago

"The problems with public education are far greater than money."

You're speaking the Truth!

swhite 9 years, 8 months ago

my husband works for the district. not as a teacher but as a custodian. i feel they and other administrators are husband may get this raise on paper but then our property tax goes up. is he really getting a raise?

preebo 9 years, 8 months ago

I would say, no. Unless the raise is 3% or more then it is useless. If you are going to raise our taxes to provide better pay to our teachers, make it worth our while. <1% or 1.5%? Neither is going to help our teachers. If their wages do not keep up with rate of inflation then they're actually making less.

absolutelyridiculous 9 years, 8 months ago

I'm self employed and have seen a pay decrease in the past 2 years! I wish I had 3 months off to recharge my batteries but no one is going to pay for that. Love the teachers and they do a fine job but please...

I think I'm entitled to some tax relief...I've been working way too much lately to keep up.

swhite 9 years, 8 months ago

Informed- We know what it is like to live in the real world. I deal with this on a day to day basis. I have run a daycare in this town for 8 years and been stiffed many times. So please don't say we don't understand what it is like to live in the real world. We also have 2 children in the school district and support this town in many ways. Everyone needs to realized it is not just the teachers who run our schools but also the custodians, lunchroom staff, paras, etc. So please don't patronize.

cdc 9 years, 8 months ago

I'm an enthusiastic liberal, but would vote against this. I have just as much education as teachers, work 40-45 hours per week the entire year, and make $26,000. My sister is a teacher and talks a lot about what great pay, benefits, and time off she gets.

If I made more than the average teacher in Lawrence, I would support them getting a raise. but i work three months MORE than teachers in Lawrence and make substantially less than them.

oldvet 9 years, 8 months ago

My spouse works for a medical services provider in a department with about 5 other professionals. All of them are paid at the top of their scale. They have not had a raise in about 5 years. She complained and so I asked her several questions... 1. How many people have left your team in the last 5 years? none... 2. How many people have left your team in the last 10 years? two, one retired and one moved to a similar job in Hawaii... 3. When the people left were their jobs filled again or did you do without and become more productive? The job were filled again very shortly...

So I suggested to her that there was no need for the firm to increase pay since there was no turnover due to pay issues nor was there any increase in productivity within the team to warrant increases.

And so I ask, truly without knowing the answer, what is the turnover in teachers in the Lawrence school district? How does that compare with the turnover statistics in the state, or in the nation? Unless a direct correlation of salary to turnover can be shown, then why should a school district need to increase salaries? Teachers are not leaving the Lawrence district to go get another job teaching somewhere else that pays more. Especially during tough economic times when families are all having to make do with less because of other rising costs, taxes, etc., it is time for the district to deal with budgets in the same way... tighten the belt, do without, move monies from one area to an area of greater need.

sdinges 9 years, 8 months ago

This is a tough one. I voted "not sure" even though when it comes down to it, I will probably vote "no" selfishly.

I don't have kids, and my property taxes and other taxes feel high enough already. I feel for the teachers, I really do. A raise of less than the inflation rate is a bit brutal. They don't get paid very much as it is.

On the other hand, this tax increase may be so small as to be barely noticeable. I'll need to think about it.

kthxbi 9 years, 8 months ago

No. They put $400 telephones in all the classrooms, in all the schools (ridiculous). I know the salaries do not come from the same "pot" of money, but they need to prioritize before they ask us for more.

toefungus 9 years, 8 months ago

The greatest myth in education. More money = better students. Check out Kansas City Missouri schools for the answer.

deskboy04 9 years, 8 months ago

The administrators have some conferences in Florida that they need to go to. Where is this year's National School Board Convention? I'll bet that it's somewhere nice.

Shardwurm 9 years, 8 months ago

Every time this comes up I say the same thing. I'll vote for pay raises on the following conditions:

  1. Eliminate tenure so that bad teachers can be easily removed.

  2. Give parents and students (the customers) input into the teachers' evaluations.

  3. Teachers and school districts stop acting like they know better than I do what's good for my children.

I'm pretty sure #3 will never happen...but the teachers need to take a hard look at themselves. Like so many of the posters here they say "Teachers are under-paid!" when they should be saying "GOOD teachers are under-paid!"

I'm for rewarding good teachers and eliminating bad teachers. Unfortunately their union is not. Until that changes I will never vote for a single pay raise. There are way too many bad apples in the system. Until they are held accountable for their performance (like the rest of us) then I say NO to pay raises.

Lindsey Buscher 9 years, 8 months ago

I don't work for the schools, never went to the schools here, don't have children, never will have children go to schools here...yet it is just plain stupud to be scared of a tax increase so others' income can keep up with inflation.

people, there is no malevolent force causing inflation to behave as it is what it is, so why would anyone vote to keep school employees down like that?

if you vote no, then the dumb `publicans win, because the city's school employees will just move to god-fearin'-don't-raise-my-taxes-republican-votin' JoCo MoFoes (as many have already).

Richard Heckler 9 years, 8 months ago

Each time commissioners say yes to developers it is likely taking more tax dollars from you. Some of them and developers laugh all of the way to the bank. Isn't it time for developers to completely bankroll their own profit making ventures? Or better yet stop for awhile.

Increases in the Cost of Community Services = Increase in Cost of Living = Increase in taxes and fees.

If all are tired of raising taxes how in the world can one support the developers desire to do whatever they damn well please. And when they over build, which creates economic displacement , that which is counterproductive to economic growth. So many taxpayers shout screw me again please anytime you wish. Build build build and take my tax dollars to your bank account. Developers don't necessarily do it themselves:their hired city/county/planning commissioners merely pave the way each time they say yes. It will probably happen again tonight unless taxpayers start showing up and raising hell.

  Developers create a host of tax dollar projects for US tax payers to pay for and maintain such as new neighborhoods which create additional demand for community services such as:

  * Additonal city staffing and equipment
  * New sewage treatment plant
  * water and sewer lines
  * streets and repairs
  *public schools
  * fire stations
  * law enforcement manpower
  * snow removal
  * bike trails and cross walks
  * Traffic signals
  * Traffic calming
  * Strip Malls
  * Expensive Flood Control

  *In general increases the cost of community services to all taxpayers whether existing taxpayers support growth that does not pay for itself or not. Let's bring on Impact Fees to cover the cost of all the above.

  Each time commissioners say yes it is likely to taking more tax dollars from you. Some of them and developers laugh all of the way to the bank.

mick 9 years, 8 months ago

Simple solution: fire the bloated bureaucracy and use the money to pay the teachers.

chapdaddy 9 years, 8 months ago

pay the teachers. underpaid, over worked, and underappreciated. PAY THEM!

yankeelady 9 years, 8 months ago

Pay them, but I'm sure it can be done without raising taxes or cutting programs that directly impact students. I'm sure there are administrative frills/perks that could be cut. I have to live within my means, and it is not getting easier. Work with what you have. No new taxes.

Charles L. Bloss, Jr. 9 years, 8 months ago

I am retired, on a fixed income. I seldom get a cost of living raise from the state. Yet my taxes go up every year. My house gets older, but every year they say it is worth more. Someday they are going to tax me out of my house, and off of my small piece of land. Then until I die I will be living in a two bedroom apartment somewhere, with no privacy and people for neighbors that are either criminals, or elderly people in the same boat as I am. The school district is largely responsible for this. Now they want me to pay for all day kindergarten, a free baby sitting service for anyone with kids. We don't have any kids. Why should we pay for this? We shouldn't. Most of our problems are because of the school district. and the education system that never has enough money, ever. The waste is horrible, huge $ 100,000 school buses go by here 1/3 full. We pay to take kids to Topeka to play golf, in these same school buses with even less students on them. The education system is a voracious money hungry monster that is never fed enough, nor will it ever be. There are a lot of things wrong in this country, but I put the out of control taxes due to an out of control school system as the worst. Thank you, Lynn

newsreader 9 years, 8 months ago


You're comment above doesn't use the best logic. I pay for the Social Securty that YOU live off that I dont use, I pay for the Medicare/Medicaid that others use that I don't get to use, I pay for the roads in parts of Lawrence that I don't use...

Has anyone ever considered to stop complaing and actually do something, I don't envision getting a seat on the School Board too difficult...

Paul R Getto 9 years, 8 months ago

Has anyone ever considered to stop complaing and actually do something, I don't envision getting a seat on the School Board too difficult:

In Lawrence, a campaign will cost you several thousand dollars, but good luck to anyone who wants to take on all the headaches.

West_Sider 9 years, 8 months ago

I would agree to the raise but... only if all the school districts in the immediate vicinity (Lawrence, Eudora, Basehor, Tonganoxie, Perry-Lecompton, Baldwin, etc..) agreed to merge. Having individual districts and all of the overhead that goes with them is way to inefficient. Those of us who work in the public sector have had to live thru the outsourcing and merger battles and I think that its high time that the state and local goverments face the same situations. Do we really need a superindentant of schools in Lawrence, Eudora, Basehor, Tonganoxie, Perry-Lecompton?

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