I just don't understand todays schools budgets: just can't run a school without millions of dollars more as extra funding, but the results seem to be a straight line if not lower on some as far as progress of students' knowledge.
$15 million would probably have built at least 500 of the "Little White One Room School Houses on the Prairie" where I started my education. I believe that an eighth-grade diploma was equal to most of the 12-year diplomas of today.
In 2005 when I returned to Iowa for my 55th year class reunion, I took a picture of my old high school, still standing, with the gymnasium attached, the school built in the 1920s and the gym built in 1948. The government had some warehouses near Des Moines that were declared surplus and the School Superintendent received permission to dismantle one to help with lumber for the gym. With donated trucks from the local businesses, the help of all the boys in Athletics and any other boys, went down and tore them apart. We slept in cars tents or whatever to complete the job. The lumber was then used for foundation forms or where ever needed.
The gymnasium still looks like the day we played our first basketball game in and is currently used by the town as an all purpose building, Senior Center, still playing basketball games in it and our class had a luncheon in it. Apparently the school administrators today are too busy taking care of their summer jobs to tend to the school.
A few things we did not have hindering us were unions, wages, lawyers, the ACLU and fancy trimmings on the schools. We did have discipline, care for our fellow students and love from our parents. There does not seem to be very many caring parents anymore; I'm awfully afraid that Humpty Dumpty is going to fall off the wall again and not too far into the future either.
Paul D. Morrison
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