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Marshall voters nix referendum

Safety/technology referendum fails 836-814

November 6, 2013

MARSHALL — The special election held by the Marshall Public Schools Tuesday failed by 22 votes. Independent School District No....

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Nov-08-13 11:23 PM

Willert may finally get it...he had to work harder to budget now. Duh,

2 Agrees | 8 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-08-13 11:42 AM

Take heart posters. When the "disagrees" start to come in droves, you can disregard on average about a 1/2 dozen of them. This is where I get off.

1 Agrees | 11 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 4:26 PM

bystander, my hs student has remarked that everyone in sight has an iPhone or an Android phone.

There will inevitably be a requirement for school computers based on that need. My point was that fulfilling that need is more prudent than filling a classroom with computers, for the sake of filling a classroom with computers may be unnecessary.

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Nov-07-13 4:17 PM

blasphemer, you said once you were a teacher. I can sympathize considering my attempts to "strictly monitor" 2 of them on the home front. I don't know what their methods are, but a few of the hs teachers are making use of the devices in the classroom. Haven't iPads been provided to schools for classroom use? Isn't that a similar situation? I'm curious, you've got my ear.

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Nov-07-13 4:13 PM

I suspect the reason many people voted no was because we still have vivid recollection of the $675/pupil increase, payed for by property owners, in 2011. And the Marshall sales tax increase in 2012. By their calculations, it'd cost a low-income household $75/year, so the median-income household is probably closer to $100/year x 20 years = $2,000 a household for a hockey rink. Oh, and there's the 3% boost per student in spending the education system just got. I'm sick of people coming up with "bright ideas" and expecting home owners to foot the bill insetad of finding a way to budget for these things, all the while eluding to the fact that you're unpatriotic or don't care for kids if you vote "no" against the tax increase.

7 Agrees | 20 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 4:12 PM

Not every kid has the best smartphone and the best data plan. What about disadvantaged kids? Should they be left to struggle simply because their parents don't have the means to provide them the technology to get ahead?

18 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 3:59 PM

NBHH, Ever been in a classroom with thirty or more kids and try to strictly monitor their cell phone use? Good luck with that.

19 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 3:13 PM

bystander, Android and Apple phones and tablets are often, not always, as powerful as the traditional desktop computer. My children's phones are essentially one with most classroom assignments; document, spreadsheet, graphics, and yes research are all accessible w/ the phone. Complex operations similar to AutoCad or database applications are always complemented by the home computer. Strict monitoring and guidelines should allow the phones and tablets to be routinely used in the classroom, and as such, that is also changing among some teachers.

4 Agrees | 17 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 3:02 PM

Yeah, look at what facebook and others have done for the average work day. Kids can now look at area under a curve instantaneously by punching a few buttons, but those same kids can't combine simple numbers without their calculator. Just look at all the good spellcheck has done for our population as a whole.

In all honesty, applications of technology can be a good thing, but for the most part, its just an endless source of revenue for manufacturers. The applications should be more thought out, and when a district purchases some, the staff needs to be trained on how to use them. For the most part, all I see kids doing is playing review games with their new toys.

9 Agrees | 17 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 12:56 PM

...left in the dust.

15 Agrees | 4 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 12:56 PM

Believe it or not, young people are going to need MORE technology training as more and more "non-skilled" jobs become skilled. Those factory jobs that used to be jobs that anyone can do aren't out there anymore. Skills in the most common computer applications like Microsoft Office's Outlook, Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, and Publisher are just the starting point. A computer lab that was last updated in 2005 is ancient by tech standards. Smartphones, not usually allowed in classrooms, aren't the answer. Technology isn't just used for looking things up on Google. It's used in science, math,and chemistry labs. Saying that it was "good enough for me, so it's good enough for them" isn't the answer. Shouldn't we all want a better, brighter future for our next generation? By limiting their access to technology that would expand their learning experience is just as good as handicapping them in the real world. You either keep up on changing tech, or you get lef

17 Agrees | 4 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 12:05 PM

After reading your criticisms allenlyon, it would seem even the cost of buying text books for each individual student is suspect. Should we require students to share texts or buy one their own to use in school?

Students take a more active role when using technology to learn compared to passively receiving information from texts or instructors. It also allows students to collaborate on projects outside of class. Whether you like it or not, technology is changing the world. Students lacking access to current technology will find it harder to compete both academically and in the work force.

18 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 9:28 AM

IMO the reference to testing is a moot point. Testing should NOT be a part of the equation...It should be dropped. PERIOD. As for upgrading computer labs, you KNOW that this is going to happen and when it is going to happen. Put it in the budget for crying out loud.

17 Agrees | 3 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-07-13 8:46 AM

allenlyon, hey, that last comment sounds an awful lot like Stepnen Covey's 7th habit "Sharpen the Saw".

The 7 Habits should definitely be a core value enabling success in each and every student. Compared to 7 Habits, NCLB looks like a boat anchor.

When I said that students could facilate the program, some of your comments were exactly on point. Students have all the computer power they need already at their disposal, on their phones and tablets. Plus some of them could tutor others who have the need to use a lower inventory of up-to-date computers.

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Nov-07-13 8:29 AM

Sharpen your pencil.

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Nov-07-13 8:28 AM

"Updating a computer lab and a 4 year plan to initiate 1:1 computing" does not convince. What are the academic needs? If classes need a computer lab, why, how often and how realistically can it be kept updated so that it works for longer than one year? Students know it's outdated because they have their own technology that works. Use that.

1:1 is not a panacea. Lots of conflicting results re: 1:1. No hard data says that a teacher presentation of this digital info and pencil/paper is less effective than 1:1. When the 4 years are up, how much will it cost the taxpayers then? Repairs? Loss? This is buying the con job from the computer companies about the glories of buying their machines en masse. Really, are adults' habits of being glued to a screen admirable and worthy of passing on to kids? District: focus on instilling self-discipline, encourage independent work (homework, thinking), support true collaboration, healthy diet and exercise habits. Sharpen you

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Nov-07-13 5:07 AM

Have a little patience. We'll read about the upgrades in the spring, along with cuts to offset these expenditures.

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Nov-06-13 10:22 PM

I would say just about every student is running around with a iPhone or what ever is the in thing today. What do they need to find out on a computer that they don't have right in gadget they now posses be it a phone or computer.

7 Agrees | 18 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-06-13 8:59 PM

hartmann, high school students have repeatedly cited your 1st point about "ancient" computers. As tech savvy as these kids are, it has to be like working with an abacus.

Your 2nd point is well taken. The students could even facilitate the program to some degree, which means lower cost.

Entry security, indeed, is a prerequisite to safe schools. That should be part of the budget whether a referendum passes or not.

5 Agrees | 17 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-06-13 8:48 PM

Just about everybody in this forum is inferring one specific point. That if these issues were separate referendums, both could very well have passed. That is, with a well thought out dispensation of the facts in each case. Each issue became a distraction for the other.

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Nov-06-13 7:01 PM

MnBorn, LA airport spent 1.5 BILLION dollars since 9/11, to make their airport safe. Look what happened last week. So much for throwing dollars at a problem.

I read an interesting blog over the weekend about "remember when gun safety was taught in schools?" It sure brought back memories (I graduated in 1970 from a Minnesota high school).

Most farm boys road hunted on the way to and from school. The basement of my high school had a gun range. At the age of 14 a right of passage was to take school sponsored gun training, and earn the patch. We kept our case enclosed .22's in our lockers, so we could go immediately down to the basement when the final bell rang. And we rode on the school buses with them.

Nowadays, kids can be suspended for having a g*d**m pen knife on their key chain. They'd probably be arrested if someone knew they had their pheasant shotgun in the trunk of their car.

I voted no on this referendum. I was happy to see it fail.

6 Agrees | 18 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-06-13 5:41 PM

1). "Support an upgrade to computer labs in the buildings. For example, the computers in the high school labs are original equipment from 2005 and are not keeping pace with current needs including meeting State testing requirements."

2) "Support a 4 year plan to implement one-to-one computing for students in the school district. Many textbooks companies are moving to digital content."

This information appeared on the MPS web site. So what part of the plan to upgrade the technology used at the school is vague? They also proposed upgrading door security and locking systems.

NBHH raises an excellent point. How many were unable to vote, either for or against due to weather conditions?

19 Agrees | 4 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-06-13 3:04 PM

Well put MinnesotaBorn. Agree with your thought whole-heartedly.

If the school is concerned about safety, then that should have been the only issue. The technology part is what caused this to fail. If they want it, budget for it, but don't come at us with cuts will be made. That is just childish. Have a plan in place, not give us this money and trust us. Technology changes so rapidly that one to one initiatives makes no sense unless you have provisions in place to upgrade teach every two to three years.

BTW When was the last time our school was attacked? Why this year actually. We had people trying to get into our schools where they had no business being and it was lucky they were stopped.

1 Agrees | 22 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-06-13 2:30 PM

Isn't it possibile that low voter turnout, and the result was out of our hands? I wanted to vote except the weather prevented that. It is likely that only those closest to the polling centers, and those voting before going home from work were the bulk of those voting. On a nice day, the turnout and the results could have been much different.

4 Agrees | 21 Disagrees | Report Abuse »


Nov-06-13 1:51 PM

How can the school district advertise (electronic billboard by Perkins) to vote yes with money from taxpayers, most of which don't agree with their position?

11 Agrees | 16 Disagrees | Report Abuse »

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