LETTER: Vote No on Referred Law 16 this NovemberIt drastically changes the direction of education in South Dakota.
By: Susan Boe-Waagmeester, Sioux Falls
To the Editor:
To November voters, I am an educator in the Sioux Falls School District, but this does not just concern Sioux Falls, it really affects every school district statewide and anyone who has a child or grandchild in K-12 education, and it also affects every teacher and administrator in the state as well. I am writing to inform readers of the massive shift in decision-making that will take effect unless we vote NO on Referred Law 16 in November.
Referred Law 16 is the law that Gov. Daugaard put forth last spring. It was previously called HB-1234 and it drastically changes the direction of education in South Dakota. The bill calls for a change in decision making, moving decisions from the local school districts to the bureaucrats in Pierre. We have already seen how this centralization of education decision making backfired with the heavily flawed national plan of No Child Left Behind. It is my fear that if we allow Referred Law 16 to pass that we will see a similar ripple in the inefficiency and inadequate distribution of funds throughout the school districts of the state.
It is hard to imagine that a board in Pierre will better know the needs of schools than the administrators and teachers in the local districts who work with your children each and every day. To state it simply, we need to keep the decisions at the local level in order to create the best learning environments for our students. Referred Law 16 places too little focus on the students of our state. Instead, it places a large focus on moving control from those trained and hired to make the decisions about your schools, to a boardroom miles away at the capital in Pierre. Vote no to maintain local control and keep politicians out of the classroom. Vote no on Referred Law 16 (previously called HB-1234).