Letter: Employers make choices with schools in mind by Tony Haug
I am writing to show support for Rhinelander’s upcoming school referendum and hopes for the strong future of our community. I am a manufacturing business owner and am extremely vested in Rhinelander’s prosperous future.
I spent many formative years in Rhinelander, so when I decided to move my young family here 14 years ago, I was confident my children’s quality of education would prepare them well for success.
In addition, starting a business here in Rhinelander was an attractive idea for many reasons. The area has wonderful resources: excellent people as a labor force, rail transportation necessary for our business and an airport enabling travel to prospective accounts in an efficient manner. We really do have so much to offer in Rhinelander.
Now in our seventh year of business, we are expanding, which will create more jobs in the community. The present educational dilemma would quite possibly have overshadowed all of these assets if I were to have made the decision today. Other businesses, if our schools falter, may never come to begin with.
As a business owner recruiting prospective job applicants, I also fear many would be turned off, in turn, by educational shortfalls caused by a failed referendum. Furthermore, good employees already here may choose to leave.
When I look to the future of our community, I see a need to continue growth. At the base of that growth, at the heart of our community, is our school district.
Without the present strength of our curriculum secured by a passed referendum, I fear our graduates immediately entering the labor pool will not be as well-equipped to perform technical tasks at hand. Also, college-bound students possibly not gaining entrance into universities of choice might keep mobile parents from moving to this area and investing in real estate. The depletion of our curriculum will further hamper our ability to recruit the physicians necessary to conveniently care for our community, both young and retired alike.
I am aware that the thought of financially reinvesting in our community is not well received by all, but I believe that the small sacrifice will be far outweighed by the benefit of solidifying our precious investment in our residences and the building of strong local business with the added hopes of attracting more.
Please vote “yes” Feb. 19 to support our schools and our community’s continued growth from the inside out.
Tony Haug, Rhinelander