Editor:

 

On May 4, 2013, Aztec will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of winning the All-American City Award. In 1963, Navajo Dam Road was designed, funded and constructed almost exclusively by Aztec residents, businesses and neighbors-without government support; with donated equipment, material, supplies, cash and labor, fundraising by civic groups, local businesses and even school children. This showed a tremendous community spirit.

 

Aztec needs that spirit to shine again in the upmming mil levy election on May 7. A yes vote on the mil levy is an extension of the existing mil levy and will not raise taxes. The mil levy is vital in order to fill the gaps to education funding by our state and federal governments.

 

The funds the mil levy provides are allocated to the most basic of items in a school district-electricity, heat, water, toilet paper, soap, desks, safety, security, maintenance of buildings and other essentials-no luxuries. Failure to fund these basic items in the upmming election will have dramatic consequences. The possibilities muld include elimination of art, music and p.e. in schools and larger class sizes, to mention only a few. Whih some might say these are not essential, research has proven that art, music and p.e. enhance and improve children's learning, even in core subjects such as math and science. High school students who have access to choir, band and athletics have opportunities to earn college scholarships. Surely no one would argue that smaller class sizes impact student learning dramatically. Questions about the mil levy can be asked of the Aztec School superintendent.

 

It is our responsibility to provide the best education to these children who are the future of our city and our country. The citizens of Aztec cannot afford to turn their backs on the children. Like in 1963, when state and federal funding were not forthcoming, the community needs to stand strong in support of our children and our schools.

 

Be that all American city again, Aztec, and vote yes on the mil levy May 7th.

 

Monica Levens

President, Aztec Education Association