West Jordan City Council passes on ordering study to look at school district split

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  • BU52 Provo, ut
    July 10, 2014 5:57 p.m.

    The growth always happens where the cheap land and housing is and the bill for new schools tends to fall on the established areas where businesses and bigger homes are. Its a tough sell to try and pry money from the wealthy side to fund buildings in the poorer side.
    If they did form a new district I would like to see them limit the size of the district and put caps on the salaries, there are a number of superfluous positions in every district.

  • Chuck E. Racer Lehi, UT
    July 10, 2014 4:51 p.m.

    It was a good thing to consolidate a hundred years ago, when every school was its own district. With growth, however, our districts are now too big. Many studies now show that there is an optimum size for both performance and economies of scale, and that size is far below the size most of our Wasatch Front districts are.

  • Chuck E. Racer Lehi, UT
    July 10, 2014 4:47 p.m.

    So many people who are opposing the option of dividing are just spouting before researching. I challenge you to look at the facts and the reasoning before judging. These can be found at smallerschools.org. Studies there show that two smaller districts (or several) are not necessarily more expensive than one big one. Some districts with the lowest administrative costs per student have less than 5000 students - right here in Utah! Of course a Daggett School District is expensive, because they are so small and spread out, but Juab and Logan and many others in Utah are better than Jordan. Big districts have big bureaucracies, that smaller ones don't need.

    We would be better off along the Wasatch Front by dividing all of our big districts into community-sized districts. There would end up being more support for schools and more satisfaction with them too.

  • FreedomFighter41 Provo, UT
    July 10, 2014 4:28 p.m.

    Sounds like a few richies from south Jordan have sour grapes!

    Listen, we the people don't want anymore district splits. They end up costing the public more, restricting teachers, and hurting students.

    Richies, send your kids to a private school. But leave public education alone.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    July 10, 2014 3:42 p.m.

    To "Gunner" the problem is that if the district splits, you have a lot more administration to pay for. You will now have a Superintendent, secretaries, HR personnel, and about 2 dozen specialists or more to hire. Plus, you will have to find office space for all of those people. The Superintendent will most likely run about $150,000/yr, and the specialists are almost all senior teachers, so they will cost around $70,000/yr or more.

    So, unless you can find a way of saving over $2 million/yr, financially it doesn't make sense to split. You will end up taking money out of the classrooms to pay for useless administration.

  • Z South Jordan, UT
    July 10, 2014 2:17 p.m.

    I hate to say this, but to be honest I think that this is really a high-stakes game of chicken by the South Jordan city council. There is no benefit to the citizens or children of South Jordan by trying to go it alone, and a great deal of harm that can be done to ALL of us if we take this too far.

    No, the Jordan School District isn't perfect, but no district is. But trying to force one municipalities opinion upon everyone else simply because a few highly-placed individuals don't like the way one bond election turned out is NOT the way to go. It is time for cooler heads to prevail. And realistically, it is time for this ridiculous district split law to be repealed. It has done and will continue to do significant harm to the children of Utah.

  • Gunner South Jordan, UT
    July 10, 2014 1:46 p.m.

    Well, if we aren't overspending on property for future schools, that leaves more money for textbooks, materials, more teachers etc. You're correct, that if they don't use it for those things, then yes, it won't matter. Maybe by splitting, they can have more control over administration salaries as well. Again, until I see the numbers from the final studies, I'm not forming an official opinion yet. I also agree on your comment about CC. That Corner Canyon school is nicer than some 4 star hotels!

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    July 10, 2014 1:31 p.m.

    To "Gunner" that is nice to have the control, but will it improve learning? Aren't there more important issues in education than who controls the money? What good does it do to control how the money is spent if it costs $1 million/year more than remaining part of the larger district?

    The districts and the schools do not really care about the kids, because if they did so we would have smaller district overhead and better money management in the districts around the state. Plus, if the district really cared about the kids, they would have stopped CC from existing and would be working to get control of curriculum back to the local level.

  • Gunner South Jordan, UT
    July 10, 2014 12:31 p.m.

    RedShirtCalTech: The point is they can control how spending is done for one. Right now Jordan School District has overpaid for property for future schools as one example. By splitting, they have the control of what is spent where, and how much is spent. Spending has a great deal to why they would want to split. I'm not forming an opinion until I see all the studies. But as a life long resident of So. Jordan, and having 5 kids in schools there, I can for a fact state that the comment about only having 12 kids in a class is complete nonsense! Every one of my kids have 30-32 kids in their classes. And for the comment "The council members message we care about kids but only our kids.", Just what other kids should the So. Jordan Council be concerned with? They work for the citizens of So. Jordan. South Jordan kids are exactly who they should be caring about.

  • sally Kearns, UT
    July 10, 2014 12:12 p.m.

    Some things are not openly talked about in polite society in regards to why South Jordan would want to go it on their own. If I lived in South Jordan, I would probably choose to break away. If I were a teacher, I would probably choose to teach in South Jordan rather than some of the other areas.

  • RedShirtCalTech Pasedena, CA
    July 10, 2014 11:16 a.m.

    What I want to know is what is the point? They can't change curriculum, can't change testing, can't change boundaries, can't do a lot of things even if they had control. Do they have a plan to actually reduce costs and improve teaching, or is this just a feud between administrators and the mayors?

  • birder Salt Lake City, UT
    July 10, 2014 9:56 a.m.

    Remember that when districts split, you effectively double the administrative costs-two superintendents, two school boards, (yikes!), several more district office buildings, etc., etc., etc. West Jordan will find itself in the crosshairs of what they complained about with the Jordan/Canyons split, except that a small percentage of voters (those who actually do vote) will have a say in the decision.

  • GoldenGrizz86 West Jordan, UT
    July 10, 2014 9:17 a.m.

    This is what happened when voters decided not to build new schools. Good job you greedy people.

  • Ender Salt Lake City, UT
    July 10, 2014 8:58 a.m.

    @ Chuck E. Racer
    By your logic, "in order to grow, division is necessary", economies of scale would have no value. And yet, spreading the cost over a larger tax base is a critical way to keep costs down!

    I agree with michaelitos, duplication of overhead and spreading the cost over a smaller tax base is not the right way to go!

  • evansrichdm west jordan , UT
    July 10, 2014 8:35 a.m.

    South Jordan just wants to split because they think West Jordan is bring them down with test results and money. If South Jordan wants to split, only they got to pay back all the money West Jordan spent to make thier schools.
    My wife work for West Jordan and is currently doing and inter. ship at an Ele. school in South Jordan and was shocked at there only being 12 students in a classroom compared to the school she is teaching at, in West Jordan, which has more then 30 students a class. If there is mismanaging of money then maybe South Jordan should have more students in each classroom oke the rest of West Jordan.

  • michaelitos Salt Lake City, UT
    July 10, 2014 8:34 a.m.

    How is the duplication of administrative overhead, the decrease of the tax (cost) base, and the narrowing of educational opportunities good for anyone?

  • Chuck E. Racer Lehi, UT
    July 10, 2014 8:30 a.m.

    It is not the school board members' fault. It is not the administration's fault. It just is not possible politically to get support to build the schools needed in growing areas in large districts. It's not possible to come to agreement over many different communities and different needs.

    There isn't a way they could really do it better with the current size. The SIZE is the problem, not the administration or board members! It ought to be divided, and it can be done efficiently, if the administration and everyone works together to make it work instead of fighting it like they did with the original division.

    In order to grow, you HAVE to divide, just as the body does with cells. Our bodies would not work well as one big cell!

  • Nagurski Pepin, WI
    July 10, 2014 7:59 a.m.

    I bet these South Jordan council members were up in arms when the east side broke away from Jordan. It all comes back to money. The biggest tax base in Jordan school district is South Jordan and these couple council members decided they want to keep all their money in South Jordan. If this is the current trend and it continued what would education in West Valley look like compared to Draper? The council members message we care about kids but only our kids.

  • USNGary San Diego, CA
    July 9, 2014 10:30 p.m.

    South Jordan may be getting over their head with wanting to split with the school district. If they put their money in the already existing district they will be better off in the long run than starting their own district. My wife used to work there before we had to move and I worked a lot with the school district and don't really see a need to split. I lived in South Jordan and I feel they think they are much better than everyone else. If they split, they will fail.