Switzerland of Ohio


I have been working on my SOLSD research project and I know I haven’t scratched the surface.

First I began digging into possible revenue from the local drilling. There will be some income received in 2015 based on 2013 production. Also for any pipelines that begin operation in 2014, there will be Public Utility Personal Property (PUPP) tax received in 2016. However, there is no definite way to determine and rely on these incomes until it is determined exactly how much will be received. A levy needs to be passed to provide Quality Curriculum in the interim.

Second, when taking a look at Curriculum, Mr. Hall states “BHS student has much less “beef” in their course offerings and district voters are paying an awful lot of “fluffy bun” on one side of the district” (BHS). There does not have to be less “beef”, with the same number of teachers as there are now and scheduling, the students can have IMPROVED curriculum in all 3 high schools. When I reviewed the schedules for the 3 high schools, I saw classes in all 3 that had multiple sections of the same class. When comparing to grade size, it appears with scheduling and combining sections (still appropriate class sizes); several periods can be open for needed classes and/or electives.

Actually, you can offer 15 more courses, but in reality, there are 8 periods a day, five are English, History, Lunch, Math, and Science, so that leaves 3 periods. If you take a foreign language, it leaves two open periods. Distance learning is needed if we offer multiple options so we don’t have 3 teachers in the district teaching a total 30 students (10 in each building) on a subject. They can all be taught by one teacher. Students would have the option to take the course as a distance learning course or another course available in their building. We need to improve efficiency with the resources we have.

Third, it has been stated more than once in local papers that it costs nearly twice as much to educate a BHS student as it does other students. How can this be possible? Based on this past years schedules, there were the following numbers of teachers, approx. students, and student/teacher ratio: BHS (7-12) 12, 171, 14.25; MCHS (9-12) 15, 231, 15.4; and RHS (9-12) 14, 208, 14.857. With these student/teacher ratios so close, how is it possible the cost per student is so different? Beallsville K-12 share 1 principal, kitchen staff, janitor, evening janitors, and busing to one central location. It actually may be more efficient.

Moving any student to an alternative location may have a gross savings of $200 – $300,000, but by the time you add up the transportation expenses and the lost revenues for students open enrolling to another district, (if you lose 52 total students), the net savings is ZERO.

There definitely needs to be reorganization, but I don’t feel any SOLSD student needs to be relocated. Improved curriculum can increase student numbers which also increases Revenue. We need to get students back, currently there are nearly 200 students open enrolling outside SOLSD. This is a loss of $1,140,000 annually.

The SOLSD School Board President stated May 28th that all schools will operate next year as they did this year with improved curriculum.

However, he warned, if the levy doesn’t pass or other revenue received, there will have to be drastic cuts. The majority voted for these new schools. Please vote for the Earned Income Tax Levy in Nov. to bridge the gap between now and anticipated PUPP revenue. If the PUPP & Production revenue doesn’t sustain the district, along with the current tax rates, then there will have to be a renewal levy or a new, different type of levy. I don’t think anyone wants to pay the taxes on “new building project”, if they are not being used.

Please check out the improved Curriculum and bring the students back to SOLSD.

I have been providing written information to the SOLSD Board as well as having discussions with Mr. Erlwein. They have been kindly reviewing my input, Thank You.

Contact the SOLSD Board in writing with courses the district you are now attending offers, that SOLSD doesn’t offer, so curriculum can be improved in the future.

Beverly Anderson

Powhatan Point