We can’t let our schools run on budget deficits

As the past elementary principal in Alcona (retired) and as a current resident in Alpena, I am very disappointed to read letters in the newspaper against the enhancement millage. Over my career in education, I have watched the disassembling of our public education system. The economic situation in our state and the lack of commitment to education as a priority has led to shortfalls and numerous cuts that are now impacting our children’s educations. Thirteen members of my family have graduated from Alpena High School. Twelve have completed their four-year college programs (one is still in college), six have pursued graduate programs and all have pursued professional careers. Now, the larger classes; fewer staff; program cuts; and unmet needs in technology, transportation and other areas threaten to erode educational opportunities that have been available here. To allow our schools to run as deficit districts is to allow our kids to receive deficit education and our communities to operate as deficit centers unattractive to homeowners, businesses and professionals. While it is uncomfortable to vote ourselves an increase in taxes, it will be far more uncomfortable to watch our schools decline. We need this millage for students in our schools today and for those who will follow them. I will be supporting our schools with a yes vote on the enhancement millage.

Kathleen Eiler