Wilton Board of Education, hear me out
About the Open Choice Program, there's no doubt
The economics of this plan are unclear
Long-term costs to Wilton, we must fear
Just one student from Norwalk we add
And we're locked into a commitment that's not so glad
$260,000 we're obliged to pay
For the next 12 years, come what may
The PPE for Wilton is $23,000 per year
The state gives $3,000, that much is clear
But we're obligated to educate that student for thirteen
The cost to us, $299,000, can you see what I mean?
The state reimburses us $39,000 in all
But that leaves Wilton taxpayers with a $260,000 call
Five students from Norwalk we bring in
And we've obligated Wilton for $1.3 million, oh where to begin?
BOE might say the PPE's not the right measure
That most of it's fixed cost, can't you see the treasure?
But no, over 90% of it is variable cost, no less
Only 2-3% for utilities, bus contract 4%, and superintendent's salary, I confess
Norwalk might be less affluent, but that's not the way
By important financial metrics, they're wealthier, we must say
Their Grand List is three times the size of ours, can you see?
And their Mill Rate's 15% lower than Wilton's, don't you agree?
BOE might also say we have empty chairs to fill
But that's misleading, and it's not a financial thrill
We've reduced class sizes and used dynamic staffing methods
So every classroom with kids has one or more teachers, no duds
Why are we subsidizing a wealth transfer to Norwalk?
Is it a great financial deal for them? I balk
It would be fair if they paid us $20,000 each year
For every "Johnny" we educate, that much is clear
The BOE should consider the benefits, yes that's true
But let's be clear about the costs we accrue
This program silently obligates Wilton taxpayers to a future cost
And I'm not sure the BOE members know what they've lost.
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