“We need to do better in our community to retain the best teachers. Lebanon teachers are paid one of the lowest salaries for districts our size.”

LEBANON, Missouri- Lebanon school counselor  Lori Lollar-Ranfeld   is speaking out in favor of ‘Proposition Lebanon Schools’ in the following Facebook post: 

“Friends, I have some things I want you to consider. I’m a Lebanon R-3 Professional School Counselor…have been for way more than a decade. I love my job, my students and the community of Lebanon. I’m committed to it. If I wasn’t, I could go work at several neighboring school districts and make as much as $10,000 more per year. Our district struggles retaining the best quality teachers, not because they don’t love Lebanon, but because they need to make smart financial decisions for their families.

Let me explain why retaining the best teachers for Lebanon should matter to you whether or not you have students in school.

As many of you know, I’ve recently started spending time providing mental health services to several local jails. While visiting with many of the inmates, I have heard some very interesting things. More than 90% of the inmates I have spoken to state that they struggled in school, particularly in reading. Of that 90%, a great majority of them received special education services. There have been studies done that show a correlation between literacy rates by 3rd grade and predicted future incarceration. These studies show that if a student is not reading at grade level by the time they reach 3rd grade the likelihood of future jail-time increases. While as an educator, I was aware of these studies, this is no longer about research. I now have names and faces to go with these statistics and it breaks my heart.

We need to do better in our community to retain the best teachers. Lebanon teachers are paid one of the lowest salaries for districts our size. The students they teach are future doctors, nurses, welders, electricians, business entrepreneurs, etc for the Lebanon community. These educators teach the people who will be taking care of all of us in he nursing home some day. No one likes to think about paying higher taxes but if we don’t invest in our local education system, we will be forced to invest more in our local correctional system. Please go out and vote and support the tax levy increase to support our local schools.