Neat trick of the day: The N&O makes the anti-school Right's case without anyone having to say a word. It's all right there on page 1B, ye olde City & State section:
Next threat to Wake wallets? High Schools
Oh sure, on the website they're going with the less inflammatory "Wake may need more high schools", but make no mistake, the print edition is utterly galling. Here we are on the brink of a recession (or are we in it? No one seems to know) and the anti-tax crowd is being handed a freebie on a plate. Nice. Education – surely a public good, no? – is now simply the next THREAT to our WALLETS. Ooooh, hang on to your purse, Penny. Hide your bill-fold, Bob, the county is comin' ta git ya. Couldn't we send a posse out to round up all the teen-aged varmints out there and send 'em to the People's Republic of Chapel Hill, where they're rich and like to pay for frills like edumacation? I hear tell they got plenny of high schoolin' out that-a-way.
The headline isn't the only editorializing, though it's the worst to be sure. There was also a reference to "the expensive bricks-and-mortar fix" to the increasing high school population problem. And, this: "It won't be cheap to ramp up high school construction." Enough with the opinion, just tell us the facts: "A new high school costs $70 million, nearly the cost of building three elementary schools." Okay, that is a lot of money, but I don't need to be told two or three times that it's a lot of money. Just stick to the facts and I can see where the school system's in a bit of a pickle. Of course, fear-mongering before there's even a bond issue on a ballot isn't going to help, is it? Developers don't want to do anything about growth, pols can't stop giving away tax revenue in "incentives", and people are always loathe to bear a tax burden, so what are we to do? We've made Wake County a wonderful place to move for work and a great place to live. But don't expect much in the way of a high school education, because that's too much to ask.