KIMBERLY THOMAS: 'Free' breakfasts didn't cause tax hikes
April 07, 2013 2:00 AM

I rarely, if ever, put my opinions down to “print,” but I feel compelled to respond to Mrs. Phyllis Clark’s March 27 letter.

If she is of the opinion that the 70 percent tax increases were in part due to the “free breakfast” programs offered at both the Homer-Center Elementary and High School for a number of years, then I am afraid she has been sorely misguided. These programs — despite the fact that little if any subsidies were recouped — were an effort on the district’s part to provide children, who would have had no nutritional support at home prior to beginning their school day, an opportunity to start on equal grounds with their classmates.

The miniscule price paid to support these children (which totaled approximately $7,500 a year to provide breakfasts to all district students including those who had no other means) was indeed the district’s choice. Sadly, due to extreme funding cuts made by erroneous tax laws and our government’s various misguided budget cuts, these “free breakfasts” are a thing of the past.

However, isn’t it ironic that during the time when there was a “free breakfast program” ongoing, the Homer-Center High School was awarded a National Blue Ribbon of education excellence?

I grew up in this school district and chose to settle and raise my family here. This choice was not because it was “cheap,” but because it was the best thing to do for my children. They both thrived and graduated and went on to higher education.

These accomplishments could not have occurred without the support and guidance of our amazing educators here at Homer-Center. I am proud of what this school district has provided my family and even more proud that I was part of it, serving nearly eight years as a school director.

My best wishes to Mrs. Clark in her role as an informant to the taxpayers of the Homer-Center School District — and enlightening the district citizens of the misdirection this school board has taken over the years. It is certainly her “right” as an American citizen to do so. As at least one school director position will be vacant during this election period, I certainly hope she chooses to throw her hat into the ring.

Kimberly Thomas

Homer-Center school director

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