With the courageous and exciting high school basketball season wrapping up and exemplary science achievements by both the junior and senior high school students, it is a good time to heal the rift of the failed millage proposal and engage the community.
It is clear we have outstanding youth and teachers to accomplish such feats. However, the community has also expressed dissatisfaction in merely handing over cash from property owners as a solution to budget woes. The school administration and the school board need to work with community leaders to ascertain what our school system should look like and how these goals might be met. Neither hand-wringing pleas to maintain the status quo nor outright rejection of any tax increases will solve our budget difficulty.
Anyone can do the same thing for more money (our gluttonous federal government has this well-established) - far more challenging and rewarding is doing a thing better with either the same or more money. This concept is familiar to and well-practiced by any successful business owner, and we have many of these in Alpena from which to draw knowledge. Additionally, many suggestions were made during the limited public debate that can be explored. Community forums and focus groups are important. Studying Alpena Community College - which continually reinvents itself successfully - should prove fruitful as well.
Alternatively we can simply let Lansing take over. I believe that would be a sadly pathetic response that would help neither the children nor the community.
Allan P. Frank