Provide context to levy increases
As an eighth-grade math teacher in Palatine, I take issue with Jake Griffin's interesting but incomplete explanation of the increase in tax levies in a recent front-page article. He reported that a Daily Herald analysis of Illinois Department of Revenue reports from 2010 and 2005 shows a $2.2 billion increase in school district levies for the Chicago metro area.
As a property taxpayer, I agree that a $2.2 billion increase is large. But as a math educator, I wondered what percent of an increase that amount represented. For example, if 2005 levies were $11 billion then the increase would mean a 20 percent rise and something to be alarmed about. However, if levies in 2005 were $220 billion, the increase would be only a 1 percent rise. That would be quite a difference in the nature of the increase, suggesting that school districts are holding the line on spending.
When I teach my students about math and percents in particular, I remind them of the adage that there are "lies, damned lies and statistics." Without a percent context to understand what numbers represent, they are just getting statistics and not understanding the full picture.
I hope in the future you will include such context so that your readers don't make a wrong and incomplete conclusion.
- Share Facebook Twitter
Article sent to (required)E-mail
Article sent from (required)E-mail Name
Subject Line (article title)
Message (optional)Success - Article sent Click to close
Interested in reusing this article?
Custom reprints are a powerful and strategic way to share your article with customers, employees and prospects.
The YGS Group provides digital and printed reprint services for Daily Herald. Complete the form to the right and a reprint consultant will contact you to discuss how you can reuse this article.Need more information about reprints? Visit our Reprints Section for more details.
Contact information ( * required )Name * Company Telephone * E-mail *
Article InformationTitle URL
Message (optional)Success - Reprint request sent Click to close