"Building Foundations" - Gaining more than trade skills, Pekin students learn to work together while constructing upscale homes. This article was in Sunday's edition of the JS on the "At Home page". While Pekin has more than 200 kids involved in this project, #150 has s number of fancy sounding vocational programs listed in classes offered but did not respond when I asked easy to answer questions like: 1. How many kids started and how many ended each program offered? 2. How many females and males? No answer from Dr. Fischer who I was referred to. My request was for 2006-2007. Since we are almost through 2007-2008 wouldn't you think she would have enough time to delegate to their huge administrative staff? Sure Caterpillar has some programs helping out in the system but they are making sure they get some kids who are hireable and can learn and hold a job.
While Peoria is building new schools, thinking new schools are the answer to their problems, searching lockers for guns with ammunition, baby sitting 3000 or more kids who are bored out their gourds because no one in the system (and their "parents"?) can sell them on the idea that dropouts aren't making it in this world and it is going to get worse in the near future. All the while people moving into are community are moving in out north or across the river. While more an more people move out of Peoria to better school systems, Pekin is moving 1100 or more students thru all types of Vocational Training.
I'm probably going to be leaving too when my County Board term is up, especially if my property tax reduction appeal to the state (along with approximately 3000 other homeowners appealing) is turned down. My wife and I will be paying over $3700 to a failing school system. Administration, the board and the destructive school unions point to all the successes they have every year failing to mention they SHOULD have a lot of successes out of 14,000 students, half of which drop out before their senior year, and $160,000,000.00 budget. Shouldn't taxpayers expect much more? And who is going to pay for the new schools? Peoria homeowners how are already paying $10,000 plus for every student ever year, the highest cost per student of any downstate school according to published reports in the JS.