To all LFHS taxpayers and parents: We all know that two-thirds of our real estate tax bill goes to local public schools. Some of us are comforted by that because we assume that high levels of spending must be buying something good. That is a false comfort.
Spending on fads and fashions may buy temporary reputation. Permanent reputation comes from performance only.
Every MBA know that the ultimate gauge of management performance is the share price. The way you buy stock in LFHS is by buying residential real estate in the district. Real estate people tell me that buyers prefer high schools to the south or west.
Operational metrics explain this sad result. Remember the teachers’ strike in 2012? The demands of the Lake Forest Education Association were defeated across the board. But then, a year later, the school board gave the teachers pay increases higher than the agreement provided! Add to that a non-teaching staff that is twice the size of the per-student state average and much higher than our nearby peer districts that those residential buyers prefer.
The laser-focus of the Final Four is on the purposeful, outcome-based management of our school. Good, Marshall, Neubauer and Mienville know that money spent on college prep leading to achievement in life is well spent. Money spent on virtue-signaling is not.
I urge my neighbors to vote for the last four of the eight names listed on the ballot for LFHS.
Donald E. Russ
Past President, Lake Bluff School Caucus
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