It will be bye-bye butterflies if funds aren’t found

To the Editor:

Everyone knows how programs from schools around the state have been getting cut, but what they might not know is that summer activities at schools are also getting cut due to lack of funds.

The Farnsworth Middle School Butterfly House and Organic Garden are a free, fun learning experience for both visitor and worker. I went to the Butterfly House when I was a kid and worked there last year. It was a fun experience, and I will be doing it again this year.

Sadly, in the future, this might not be able to happen because of lack of funding. The school district pays for only one teacher and no supplies. The rest is funded by grants and fund-raisers.

In total, the Butterfly Garden costs $10,000. The FMS garage sale and auction makes up about half of that amount, enough to pay for the Organic Garden. However, the Organic Garden makes only a few hundred dollars because the gardeners send the food that they grow to food pantries to help the hungry.

Also, another fund-raiser is the school’s talent show, which makes about $1,000, and the rest comes from grants.

This is OK, but there’s just one problem: There are no grants this year.

Without more financial support from our New York State government, the Butterfly House might not open in the future. If New York State could tax a slightly larger amount of money to support the schools or if we could get more donations from the community, this wouldn’t have to end.

Now, you are probably thinking, “More taxes? No way!”

And I understand. I mean, who wants to pay extra money?

But without that extra money, the Butterfly House might not be able to open, and a great learning experience would be lost. If everyone in the Guilderland community could pay only one more dollar, it could make a lot, if not all, of the money that the Butterfly House needs to raise.

There are enough budget cuts as it is. Please don’t make the board of education have to cut this fun learning activity, tool

Tim Ryan

Westerlo