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Editor

Ken Tingley is Editor of The Post-Star in Glens Falls, N.Y. and writes a regular blog called "The Front Page."

You don’t vote on your school’s budget even though it represents your single largest tax bill of the year.

You don’t vote on the school board races – in the rare instance when they are contested – even though they are openly debating important issues like how to protect your children from mass shooting and how to keep your taxes in check.

That seems a little short-sighted.

The turnout for school board elections generally hovers around 10 percent. That’s why I can confidently say that almost all of you don’t care. Only 1 in 10 of you will show up for what takes five minutes out of your day.

That is pretty pathetic.

Most people fall back on two reasons for not voting. First, they don’t think their vote will not matter. Schools often schedule events that showcase students work to ensure that parents of students are on the grounds when the vote is taking place. School employees have a stake in the vote and also turnout in significant numbers, but regular voters do not.

Others say they are not informed enough on the budget to make a decision, or they don’t know anything about the school board candidates.

Neither needs to be true.

Over the weekend, we will be printing a capsule analysis of every school budget in the region that includes spending increases and the tax rate.

This should also give citizens the information they need to make an informed decision.

So do our homework this weekend and get out there and vote on Tuesday.

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Ken Tingley is the editor of The Post-Star and may be reached via email at tingley@poststar.com.  His blog  “The Front Page” discusses issues about newspapers and journalism. You can also follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kentingley.

 

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