Federal Way letters: School levies and incarceration

Support school levies

I am a long time substitute para-educator at the Federal Way School District and on Feb. 8, voters will vote to approve a Tech and EP&O levy. These are NOT new levies.

These levies replace the current levies, and most importantly, there is NO TAX INCREASE.

The tech levy will provide students and staff with equitable access to technology and digital tools/ resources essential to positive student learning experiences. Technology became more critical in March 2020 when schools shut down for remote learning due to COVID 19.

I have seen the importance of technology firsthand in K-12 classrooms.

Students use desktops, laptops and Chrome Books for learning, in-class and homework assignments and district/state assessments.

Why is this important?

Washington is one of the top states in the nation in technology careers for the 21 st century. We must educate our students to be engaged today and ready for tomorrow.

The EP&O levy is just as important as the tech levy. It has been approved by the voters for the past 41 years. The state funding formula currently used is flawed and leaves a serious funding gap; hence, the need for this levy. This levy provides essential funding for special education, the English Language learners, music, athletic/after-school programs and critical staffing needs like nurses, counselors and career specialists, custodians, security, bus drivers and transportation services and para-educators like myself.

With voter approval, our tax rate will be approximately $3.65 per $1,000 of assessed property valuation for the next four years, roughly the same as it is currently.

I served on all three of former Superintendent Dr. Tammy Campbell’s levy/bond committees and they all passed. I would like to keep my perfect record – so I urge you to vote “YES” so our students can receive the highest quality education they deserve.

Gary Robertson

Federal Way

Incarceration is education

I read with interest Sheley Anderson’s January 7 bleeding heart letter titled, “Educate, not incarcerate” and strongly disagree. Incarceration is an excellent form of education. It teaches all criminals that there are consequences to crime. There is a difference between harmless childhood pranks and criminal activity. Unfortunately, our court system has become too lenient when dealing with criminals. Therefore, we have a stream of repeat offenses directed at members of the public. An incarcerated adult or youth cannot commit repeat crimes while in jail. We members of the public deserve better.

Harold C. Nyberg

Federal Way