The upcoming Pittsburg school bond election will be costly, no matter how it is calculated.

The question is not whether school physical and instructional changes are needed, or whether voters can “afford” to tax themselves.

The preeminent question is which will ultimately cost more — abandoning the needs of present and future students or abandoning the economic development based upon education and creativity that the city should never cease, if it wants to continue to grow its tax/income base.

Failure to consider either educational or economic community needs would send a signal to newcomers, those considering a business here, those aware of Pittsburg’s strong historic industrial/educational base, and others. Past history shows that a city dies when its education, vigor and creativity die for lack of impetus, support and growth. When THAT happens, there is no tax base – or pride base, or cultural base — left.

Bond issues that involve spending money seldom get an A grade. But consider the impact of the alternative to passage, both human And financial . The future is human, is ahead, and is not based entirely upon the once-alluring facades of the past.

As many of you know,I have spent my life in and around education. I was education writer for The Sun, The Wichita Eagle and the Lincoln, Ne. Journal for decades, and president of the international Education Writers Association for three years. I taught at Pittsburg State University, College High and Galena High at one time. I was asked to write education features for the Sunday New York Times and London Times.

I remain assured that physical and intellectual education growth that I have seen, in all locales and times, is the best way to build both tax bases and humans.

Jack L. Kennedy

Pittsburg