To the Editor:
We are living through the worst economy since The Great Depression, the worst health crisis since The Spanish Flu and the worst head of state since George III. It is not surprising that North Kingstown revenues are predicted to be down. The Town Council is required by law to balance the budget. A Republican-led majority has chosen to do this, largely, by cutting education. This is a mistake.
I’m a retired police officer and a small business owner. You may see my wife and I driving our horses around Wickford, Saunderstown or Quidnessett. We have no children, I’m not a teacher. So why do I care about the school budget?
It’s simple, really. I’ve just turned 54 and (if COVID-19 doesn’t get me) I’m blessed to live during a time when I may very well survive another 30 or 40 years. Enjoying my old age relies on the continued prosperity of my country, my state and my community. That prosperity depends on our children being ever more productive. Education is the best investment we can make in their future and in ours.
Some will grumble that our schools are wasteful or mismanaged. The fact is we get good value from our schools. They consistently spend about the state average per student and perform at or near the top in any measure of performance.
John ‘Jack’ Kliever is the owner of New Deal Horse and Carriage, a retired Sergeant from the Newport Police Department and a candidate for Town Council.