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A Commitment to Public Education

March 22, 1992

The general public all too often is just not in touch with day-to-day reality. As the state of California joins the rest of the nation in a major recession caused mainly by a decline in consumer confidence and by political incompetence, we are led to believe that fault lies with everyone but ourselves.

We continue to accept poor performances from people we elect to office because it has become a way of life. We refuse to vote because we believe it doesn't make a difference, and we continue to reduce our commitment to public education because we are told that we are not getting our money's worth.

Well, my friends, in many cases we are getting our money's worth, and in the Downey Unified School District far more than our money's worth. Education is not expensive, but it does cost money.

The state provides Downey schools with $3,007.91 per pupil. The average private school in Los Angeles County charges approximately $6,000 per pupil. We simply cannot continue to put funding into jails, drug abuse programs and needless mandates without realizing that education is the only way to make our world a better place.

As we neglected our responsibility to properly fund education, other nations did not, and now we are seeing the results and paying the price for it.

It is time to take control of our destiny and guarantee a better future for our children and ourselves.

EDWARD A. SUSSMAN

Superintendent

Downey Unified School District

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