Editorial: School committee made smart choice
Tight budgetary times can mean difficult decisions. But, in the grand scheme of things, the call the District 518 Instructional Committee made Monday morning wasn't tough at all.
The committee opted Monday to not recommend the restoration of a paid varsity boys basketball assistant coaching position. This was a post that was cut three years ago -- at the same time a paid girls varsity assistant coaching position and a football coaching position were eliminated.
Currently, the above-mentioned coaching slots are filled by volunteers, who -- of course -- are worthy of commendation for giving of their time to the district. But in considering the restoration of the paid varsity boys basketball position, the Instructional Committee wisely saw the precedence that could be set. If one sport got the benefits of a paid assistant, wouldn't it seem likely that other sports would ask for the same?
It is no secret that extracurricular activities, and athletics, are integral components of any school district. However, at a time where school districts all over the state are needing to slash budgets, it only makes sense not to take on additional costs in these areas -- particularly where there are volunteers already in place. Unfortunately, these folks may eventually opt to not continue on without compensation, but this type of choice is far better from a district perspective than cutting in-classroom personnel (which, unfortunately, will almost certainly have to be done later).