Proposed cuts in discretionary money for Hoover principals raise concerns

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Academic teams have value

My child participated in Scholars' Bowl for 5 years. Options like this provide a place for students with a special gift who are willing and in need of a place to build their skill with like-minded students. They are not, however, merely academic. They are also an incredible character-building platform for these students who learn to encourage and respect their peers, commit to a team goal, and handle both victory and defeat with grace and class. These skills are essential to the good citizens we hope to produce by the time they graduate. Thanks to the dedication of their faculty sponsors we can all take pride in being represented by some truly exceptional young people, who by the way come from a diverse ethnic, social, and financial background.

Amy Ferguson 83 days ago

Penny for Hoover Schools?

See:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8OjnZpbiD_A
See links in video description.
Penny produces over $20 million per year in new revenue for HCS.

Dan Fulton 85 days ago

Scholars Bowl

Disparaging money spent on Scholars Bowl participation shows a lack of support for academics which is the main purpose of a school system.

Joann 85 days ago

Fiscal responsibility

Our supt did the right thing. When expenses exceed revenues discretionary spending has to be cut. It's the job of the Board to determine if more revenue is required and if deemed necessary, to bring a property tax increase proposal to the Council. I'm personally willing to have my property taxes increased if there is a demonstrated need for our schools.

Mike 85 days ago

Discretionary Spending

I would suggest they audit discretionary spending. It sounds like some students get special attention while others get left out. I would like it used for those in need, not to send some wealthy kid to the scholars bowl.

RC in Hoover 85 days ago

Wealthy?

Since when do only wealthy kids participate in Scholars bowl?

Robert A. 85 days ago

RC

Bring substance to your comments not unsubstantiated statements. To assume only rich families participate in scholars bowl is ridiculous at best.

Jason 85 days ago

Just FYI

RC-

I'm the coach of the Hoover High Scholars bowl team, and I wanted to let you know how your money is spent in our program. Scholars Bowl receives a small amount of money (I believe we got $4000 from the school last year) to run a program that is year-round--we literally begin our competition schedule in September and finish in June. That $4000 pays all of the entry fees for tournaments for the year, maintenance on our buzzer systems, and for the trip to Nationals for our players. We pay for every player to travel, and never charge our players for the cost of hotel or travel. Why? Specifically because Scholars Bowl HAS NO FEES. We don't ask for anything from our players except their time and dedication. They represent your community around the southeast and around the country, and no player has EVER been turned away from the program because of finances. We don't require our players to sell anything; all of our fundraising is done via the tournaments we host, which we staff ourselves with parents, players, and loyal team members from past squads who regularly travel back to Hoover to help us out with these events. The Hoover Invitational Tournament, now in year 12, brings 60+ academic teams to Hoover High for one of the top events in the southeast--many of whom stay overnight in addition to buying meals, adding money to our city's revenue stream.

Between Hoover and Spain Park, 7 of last 10 state titles in statewide academic competition belong to your city. That's in competition against not only public schools, but selective private schools like Indian Springs and Altamont. Not only is that something we take great pride in, but it is also something you should appreciate. Your property values go up when our schools win state academic titles; your investment of $4000 a year, which is honestly peanuts in a school budget like ours, is going a heck of a long way.

There are people who are calling for our program to be cut, like you, RC, and I understand that budgets are reality. Just understand as well that if you cut our program, you take away one of the best academic gems in your city's crown, a program which has 20 kids from 9th grade to 12th grade participating in STUDYING FOR FUN. You're cutting a program which has been cited by schools all over the state as the model for academic teams statewide. You're telling me that a program open, without tryout, to any student who wants to learn and work to join and be part of a family is "special attention" that is leaving others "left out." Tell you what, RC--come out any Wednesday at 3:40 to Hoover High and ask to come to one of our practices. See what we do. See who we serve. Find out what your money is going to. I promise you that you won't be disappointed. I mean this sincerely, and I invite any community member interested in learning more to contact me via school email for information on when and where you can see the Hoover Bucs Scholars Bowl team play. We welcome you.

Joshua Rutsky 84 days ago

See our full December issue