Survival in a Down Economy: A Budget Reduction Process for Superintendents

Volume 5, Number 3 (July-September, 2010)
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here Keeping other employees who exercised poor judgment in this fiasco, doesn't stabilize anything. All it does is allow them to potentially exercise poor judgment with other kids. I think in order to stabilize, you need to get rid of all the bad apples in a reasonable time frame because you can't pull them ALL out at once. I also hope the board doesn't think their work is done here. I expect a level of stepping it up for the principals and Assistant principals who are now principals in managing these people out of their jobs and out of the district. As for the Super of the future, I do hope that we have the foresight to hire a non nonsense kind of administrator who has the capacity of putting students first in all ways.

I put emphasis on "administrator" because that is what this district needs. An Administrator to level set expectations of us the crazy parents of Palo Alto , and the teachers to continue to have empathy and serve ALL our students in the best way possible. We must use this opportunity to look at ourselves in the mirror, all of us, and embrace the warts and beauty marks and find an administrator who sees the best and worst in us and helps bring this community together, for our children.

Expanded enrichment programs. New books and equipment. Capital improvements. In the corporate world, that kind of idiocy gets you fired. Go read the details of what happened. What he did was borderline criminal. A young girl was sexually attacked in a Palo Alto High School bathroom. And he screwed up the investigation. Either of these things are firing offenses. I don't know Dr. McGee personally but from watching school board meetings, etc. I agree with previous commenters who called out Palo Alto residents themselves--at least the incessant, destructive finger pointers--as PAUSD's root problem.

I can think of no more thankless and ridiculously brutal job than a position within school administration in this town. Who could ever meet the expectations of all the perfect finger-pointing parents and non-parents who of course could do a much better job than all the professionals we've ousted over the past several years?

Nobody could. We have the dysfunction we deserve, Palo Alto. Best of luck to Dr. McGee and Dr. Skelly, and I feel sorry in advance for the poor person we hire next. But maybe we'll finally find someone who "cares about the students and their safety" and all will go fine. We do NOT need superman, we need an Everyman or Everywoman who is not in love with their own image, and is focused on our kids. Some posters sound like the Chicken Littles when many of us called for the end of the Kevin Skelly reign, and guess what, we found Glenn McGee and you were happy.

Unfortunately, I don't think the Board has the courage to hold her accountable. Paly parent: Agree re: culpability. McGee should hold Diorio accountable as his final act of contrition before Friday. McGee Thank you for your service, Best wishes to you and your loved ones. While a lot of comments send Max their best wishes, they seem to go along with the tone of "blame the angry parents".

Max was definitely responsible, and I am glad the board held him accountable. But he wasn't alone. Let's not forget who else was responsible: his staff. The teachers, principals, assistant principals, and district staff were the ones who screwed up in both the money problems and the mishandling of sexual assault. While Max is taking the fall, I don't feel it was entirely his fault. There are more firings go happen before we reach the bottom of the cesspool of misbehavior in this district. The last thing we should do is bring in a new superintendent and place him on top of the rotten foundation of our broken schools.

Keep firing. You haven't reached the bottom of the rot yet It's not like she was unaware the district was planning on that money. It's not like she was unaware that the community was against this underhanded money grab.

History of the Superintendency

And regarding the mishandling of the sexual assault cases for 4 years Teri could have demanded better training for staff. She could have demanded clarity on policy although it was actually written and clear. She could have demanded the district better support the teachers in understanding their responsibility under OCR. In fact, it goes back to the Schoology incident, the zero period, any number of issues that the community wanted that Teri fought against Max.

Why crying? There were no lack of opportunities for Teri to help support Max and staff to do the right thing. I had always assumed she wanted to throw Max under the bus.

The argument for a new framework for school finance reform

He has managed to cut so much A person who wi She also did not state the terms of the agreement and whether McGee will receive any payment. In , the state legislature made another attempt to equalize funding with the Comprehensive Education Improvement and Financing Act, but the court found this effort insufficient. Eventually the money runs out. Justice Marshall mentioned the delivery of high-caliber education in his dissenting opinion in the Rodriguez case. Ya maybe he'll get the budget under control! She is very dedicated.

It did go to teachers. It is shocking how under funded our school system is in Palo Alto of all places. Prop 13 and all, what crap. We have to PIE to get classroom aides? And science etc? There needs to be a massive cleaning house and change in culture. Sometimes I wonder if they celebrate the students that parents remove from the District and declare victory each time it happens.

The sick and twisted culture needs to end. The last board did that to Max, and while I don't absolve him, especially of the secrecy that contributed to the problems festering, I think he really stepped in it. With so many of the old guard left and no effort to bring about change, they are likely to spoil the new bunch. I hope the board finds someone who is not afraid of truth. Too bad McGee did not have his onsite office hours at the start of his tenure. I too hope the resignation is not for health or personal tragedy. It's really too bad we did not clean up our house before hiring him, this could have been a good partnership.

To those who keep blaming the families here, look in the mirror, you are the problem. As long as there is a contingent to entrench the CYA culture, we will continue to have problems. There will always be problems to solve in a district. Coverup makes things fester. What accomplished millionaire would say no to such a sweet deal?! Grab the latest Forbes list and ring them up, I'm sure they'll all return the calls. To those who are complaining about the turnovers, there has been a good reason for each of them, and it's not simple incompetence, although some have been.

Palo Altans are an intellectual crowd, therefore, more outspoken. The claims of parents driving them out, well, there was only one Duveneck principal who was actually driven out, and now, perhaps, McGee and we all see his outrageous errors. While other districts may or may not have less turnover, it's because the parents don't complain. When I heard Max speak amongst mostly senior citizens when he was new to town, I knew we were doomed when he said, "The stress is due to the parents.

What's wrong with being blue collar workers? My son is a plumber with a family and is quite happy. It's all the parents who are pushing their children too hard. Sure, there are the Tiger Parents, but there is also everyone else. I knew he wasn't going to address school stress. Instead, he promoted the students who excelled creating a research program, etc.

We need someone who sincerely cares about our students. We need a superintendent from a public school who is knowledgeable with public school administrative practices and guidelines, not someone from a college prep school, as was McGee. People seem to forget that PAUSD is indeed a public school, and there are different levels of student aptitudes and goals. This is from a class of approximately students. Not everyone is trying to get into these colleges. Although, it's still stressful to get into the second-tier universities because of the PAUSD rigor and competition of students.

We need our public schools back. Rules on grade distribution some only give 2 "A"s per class , homework caps for AP classes, mandatory teachers staying after school, etc. My children have found that their professors are superior to the AP teachers because they actually teach.

AP shouldn't mean "figure it out yourself, you are smart, I don't need to teach. Another tells students to use the buddy system so he doesn't have to help. It's fine to teach complex material, but no need to ruin their GPAs due to egos. Those who have money for tutors have an edge over those who can't pay for them. Our students shouldn't need tutors for regular lane classes, but they do, particularly in math and science.

And no, I don't expect dumbed-down courses, but I do expect reasonable classes without so much excess homework, as this is a public school. Our students also need to study for the SAT and have extracurriculars for college applications. Most students are sleep-deprived. Those who want to take Zero Period can show up earlier this is different than Gunn's 0 Period, where the students were taking 8 classes total.

Why can't we follow that bell schedule? Our students are so sleep-deprived. Sad day. A good man and administrator run out by a town that can't be satisfied. Heaven help his successor. The teacher's union who refused to re-negotiate the salary increase, even though they knew very well there is no budget for it 2. The principal who violated the Title IX law more than 30 times, and put our students in danger by allowing sexual assault convicted student to roam the campus. Other incompetent staffs who mis-calculated budgets, who forgot to open negotiation, who did not supervise the Title IX compliance, and a lousy law firm that told the district no need to open UCP when our student was sexually assaulted!

A Quality Approach to School Funding

The problem starts with the previous Board, and what they decided was important in their search for a Superintendent: someone who would make PAUSD into some uber magnet district with fancy enrichment programs at the high school level. So they hired Max, who focused his time on the research program for high school kids, taking trips abroad. He delegated everything else to a problematic staff, and never followed up on all the stuff he delegated; at best Max should have been hired as an Assistant Superintendent to develop these fancy pants programs, because he had no interest in managing the entire school district.

And without a majority of the board interested in performing their oversight role, we have the multi-million dollar deficits, the willful disobedience of the law involving Title IX among other things. You know why Max wanted a multi-year contract with the unions? He wasn't interested and didn't want to spend his time each year negotiating with the unions. And what the subordinates who played a role in creating these messes? One retired with a pension of hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.

The other left before the issues were investigated. Just remember, we voted for this additional parcel tax, which was suppose to be used to fund smaller class sizes, mental health, etc. Were we played or what? The board doesn't have a majority of members who want to focus on oversight, and proper management of the district. Remember last year, one of the Board Members ran for a 3rd term, saying the district needed her "experience" - her so called "experience" has cost the district heavily.

Another member, always brings up her finance background - but look at the the large budget deficits the district has had to deal with. And a third member practically acts like a union member how she analyzes issues. It will be a big mistake to let those three board members define the job search for the next Superintendent.

The district needs an operational manager first, and foremost. Once the district is properly managed, and back on a firm financial basis, then the district should look for an Assistant Superintendent to develop some of the high school "enrichment" programs that the majority of the current board wants.

Strongly agree with Common Sense. Dauber and Collins definitely need to drive the hiring process, not the other 3 board members. They should look only at local, northern CA candidates, with Public School experience. Stop bringing out of state people who have too long a learning curve. Simply because of a lack of timely notification as specified in the union qcontract. By the way, what is wrong with looking within California for a Superintendent. Why is it necessary to look across the country? This community is so toxic no qualified candidate will even consider applying.

Breaking Down the Role of the School Superintendent

I think it odd that the two union heads are so upset. They are half the reason for his resignation. Shame on you union presidents! I didn't see school leaders or the union shed any tears for the actual victim here in public meetings, the victim of the sexual assault in the high school bathroom How twisted is it for the school employees to say that the community is toxic when in fact it is the school employees who are the toxic ones.

What is "toxic" is having district leaders have a perpetrator remain in school on campus for months after a girl is sexually assaulted in a bathroom by the perpetrator and reports it to administrators, then for the administrators to somehow mislabel the event as consensual this makes no sense - if it was consensual, why did the girl report it in the first place? Meanwhile, the parents have had to withdraw their child from the school to protect her and move her miles away.

Diorio has to be terminated. It is absolutely appalling what the administrators did to this girl and her family. They tried to sweep it under the rug. And they would have it not for the sexual assault victim in the other bathroom off campus at a church and KTVU. I hope the victim and the family soon files civil lawsuits against these administrators so that the proceeds can hopefully pay for millions of dollars of counseling this victim will need to somehow get over the horrible treatment she received at the hands of the district who were supposed to protect her.

And not only did they fail miserably, but they tried to cover it up. I'm sure he did many good things publicly and behind the scenes. My personal opinion is that he should have stepped up to fix and solve the problems that came about on his watch. I appreciate that there were probably some out there pushing for his resignation.

But the true character of person is shown brightly when that person stands up, takes responsibility for the mistakes and then takes the steps to make it right. McGee needed to go. This is not about "turnover" and "high maintenance parents". This is about sexual violence and the safety of our kids. Max McGee [portion removed] mishandled the complaints of both the church victim and the school victim, allowing a convicted sex offender to stay at school and jeopardizing the safety of all of our students.

People don't count data rules the day. State test scores were released today. Palo Alto got a special mention in the SJMN article on California's flatlining scores: "In Palo Alto, where high scores fuel a roaring housing market, both math and English scores fell 3 points. I hope most parents relax their strong minds, support the staffs instead of pushing them to the corners. We need good teachers! School board, they just know to point fingers. Any supports from them? At the end, I wish Dr. McGee and your family well. Enjoy life. It's too bad that McGee is taking the fall for his staff members that failed miserably in their jobs.

Of course he is ultimately responsible, but at some point a top leader needs to be able to rely on his direct reports, especially those that have been around a long time. How he gets to walk away from this is beyond me. With a Paly teacher for a wife, he clearly had a huge conflict of interest in his role, so perhaps McGee is ultimately to blame for trusting him to do his job, instead of removing him immediately when he came to Palo Alto. Already a great program at Gunn, Small Learning Community, which is similar to Paly's TEAM and was growing to accommodate as many kids as wanted to enroll, was suddenly reduced over the summer.

Kids that were told they would get in no problem were surprised and disappointed when they got their class schedules in August. I blame Scott Bowers directly. Regarding the Title IX violations, Holly Wade was hired to do nothing but deal with the district's compliance, and she also failed miserably. But again, with all of the OCR investigations over the past several years, McGee should have been micro-managing her too.

Sadly, we will likely not get someone that is both a strict boss and a caring human being for our students. Best wishes for a happy retirement, Dr. I am very confused. This story reports I assume incorrectly that the civil rights community defended McGee and lauded his performance on civil rights. Yet one of the primary reasons for his departure was that fact that he failed to enforce federal and state civil rights laws to protect a young lady of color from bullying and harassment following a sexual harassment incident in a bathroom by an athlete.

Surely these civil rights advocates are not defending the piss-poor performance of a white man and his white administration that failed to take seriously the alleged sexual assault and total ignoring of all the federal and state civil rights laws intended to protect a girl of color? Surely these civil rights leaders were down there to defend this girl, whose rights were violated, not the white man who violated them?

What am I missing? I must be reading this wrong. Weekly can you clarify? So confused - On Mondays and Wednesdays the civil rights community includes white females, but the rest of the time it is just for blacks and hispanics. On leap years they include asians. Two things can be equally true: --McGee was in charge for at least two episodes of egregious leadership and obfuscation, both fire-able offenses, despite any of his other talents and policy wins. Why is the board's indignation directed at Dr.

McGee and not the Paly principal? The sexual assault that happened in the Paly bathroom is almost identical to the Brock Turner case. Web Link. The search for a replacement might also include a look at retired senior officers from Naval or Marine Corps training commands.

These are individuals with experience in strong administration and discipline. They often have real records in boosting both performance and morale. Traits seemingly in short supply in a system that appears to suffer from chronic dysfunction. There comes a point where a leader is no longer capable of leading regardless of why. For this reason it was time for Max to go. Having said that, the chances we will find a better replacement are slim. I wish him all the best. I wish Dr. McGee the best.

He accomplished some good things on the equity front, and I sincerely believe that his heart was in the right place. Nonetheless, his operations management weaknesses were a real problem. Now a decision has been made. Let's move forward and stop publicly lambasting a person who has resigned. Let's support the search for a replacement. We need to encourage the board to hire a strong administrator to fill this important role at the helm of our valued public schools.

Lashing out online will not be helpful toward that goal. Future candidates for the job will find their way to this thread. Let's be more constructive, please.

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Survival in a Down Economy: A Budget Reduction Process for Superintendents [ E. E. Gene Davis, Jack A. Coffland] on *FREE* shipping on. [READ ONLINE] Survival in a Down Economy: A Budget Reduction Process for Superintendents by. E. E. 'Gene' Davis, Jack A. Coffland. Book file PDF easily for .

I hope the Board will look for operational strength in future candidates. I hope they will look for someone who has a track record of hiring and developing excellent staff--that includes training on policy requirements and tying policy adherence to job performance reviews.

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Openness to innovation is important, but in most districts that originates underneath the superintendent and generally works best when it starts close to the classroom and is encouraged by the superintendent. We need a superintendent who can capably handle the complex tasks associated with building and managing a very large staff, union issues, budget, and other resources attentively, daily--who can keep his staff on track moving toward existing goals and improvements that keep student learning and wellness at the center of all they do.

In fact, that is what any district needs. We are not so special in that regard. Let's stop kvetching and start being more constructive toward supporting efforts to identify and hire a strong albeit imperfect, because no one is perfect replacement. You keep finding fault, it seems that nothing your partner does can quite make the grade, nothing they do is right, the newspaper keeps telling you that you got screwed over again and again, no matter who it is, what they've done or been accused of, what the actual facts are or what it's actually about in detail.

When this happens it's time for you to look seriously at the common denominator in each of these relationships, which is you. Time to look in the mirror, Palo Alto. A serious and sober self-reflection a sort of moral inventory, you might say , may be called for in order to help understand why, each time, it seems to turn toxic and people leave. The really, really sad part about this is that the ones who really suffer in the end are the kids.

Or maybe you are ignoring it because it doesn't fit your narrative. Is that in a board policy? California law? Federal law? I doubt it. The truth is that PAUSD has never been perfect but every since Dauber and now Collins have come along things that could have been handled quickly and without huge fan fare, problem then solution theory, are now handled like every thing is the end of PAUSD and huge changes need to be made.

PAUSD has always had its issues but since Dauber showed up things have really, really been out of control because with him around employees at high levels walking around on egg shells. Of course huge changes need to be made in Daubers eyes because he works for Google and is on their payroll and Google's whole goal is to destroy public education as we know it and have Google schools with Google Robots and Computers teaching the kids. Less money needed, less teachers needed and huge money for Google.

Superintendent Radio Network

Dauber is changing Palo Alto Schools for the worse and is doing it in the wide open while working for Google. Ah relationships, [Portion removed. With people [portion removed] who want to point fingers instead of fixing the problems with the organization, nothing will change, as predictably, it did not before. When McGee came, he was plopped in the middle of an organization with people who engaged in full-throttle CYA and no accountability, and that really did not change.

Google robots teaching kids. Manchurian board member. Excellent entertainment for the middle of the work day, thank you! I doubt it - Of course the Paly principal should be fired. She is the classic liberal with good intentions gone awry, protecting the criminal, and punishing the victim. Her decision wasn't informed by the facts or justice, but racial politics. Steve Dabrowski, That is a really interesting suggestion. I would go one further, though. I think Palo Alto has suffered all the negatives of its strictly hierarchical organizational structure, when a school district really is conceived as a structure to allow community control of schools.

Not exactly a flat structural model, or a "starfish" organization, but it should be closer than to a strictly hierarchical structure, in which it's too easy for employees to make decisions for their own departments at the expense of the organization or those they should serve.

When the district over and over again demonstrates that employees not only don't follow the most basic protective procedures and laws, but that employees also deliberately engage in avoiding the discussion of or the extension of the most basic protections and laws to families, that they maintain an adversarial rather than collaborative relationship with families, it demonstrates that the organizational structure is wrong for the community's purpose.

This is not about this individual or that individual employee or leader, although it is to the extent that existing employees holdover corrupt organizational practices when some leave if the organization is not changed. And if there is no attempt at truth and reconciliation from past wrongs, the incentives remain to repeat the corrupt behavior rather than change. On another thread, a teacher wrote movingly about how they have the students' best interests at heart, and they mean well, but seemed not to understand the old maxim: The Road to Hell is Paved With Good Intentions.

It may take several years to hone all those skills, but make sure you are progressing so you will be ready when the time comes to interview for a golf course superintendent position. Be smart on your career path and pick your jobs and mentors wisely. There is a reason great superintendents tend to develop programs for interns and assistants. Those superintendents are the people who feed the industry with new talent. Lastly, when you become a superintendent, be sure to develop and train your assistants properly. As we all improve, it only makes the industry stronger.

We all must learn how to lead. From our mentors we learn valuable leadership skills, but we can also learn ineffective leadership skills. I may have learned more about how not to manage and lead people from poor examples, as it made me promise to not be a poor leader. Leadership by intimidation is a good example of that. If you intimidate your people so they are afraid of losing their job, it will have short-lived results and end up in high turnover rates. A title of assistant superintendent does not equivocate to having the respect of your co-workers.

Respect is earned. Meet and get to know your entire staff. Simply put, shoveling alongside someone earns a lot more respect than watching somebody do that job. No job is too small and when your co-workers see you pitching in, you will soon know that there is mutual respect. This may be the most important factor to doing your job well.

During the hiring process, I always outlined my expectations for my assistants. If the staff started at 6 a. The assistants needed to lead the team and get out on the golf course to get the job done. Be a part of a management team that sets the example rather than showing up five minutes after the crew is out on the course. Be a helping hand and assist the team with any of its needs that will best allow for being ready for a quick start in the morning.

Are machines fueled? Are tools put away? Is the building organized? Getting to know your team well is important. However, one must look outward as an assistant and develop an appropriate network of friends, associates and influential people. If you want to make it to the top of your field, then work on getting to know people who will influence your career? You need to have a plan. The most qualified person does not always get the job, but the best networked person will surely find more opportunities. Both the assistant and the superintendent will know when it is time to move on to another golf course or onto a golf course superintendent job.

The signs are simple:. These comments are for your typical assistant wanting to advance to a superintendent. The maintenance rituals of aerification and topdressing are fixtures in the world of golf. Depending on their locales and annual budgets, superintendents spend a few days each year punching holes in their greens with metal tines, or pulling cores with solid tines to improve airflow, break up organic material and maintain turf health. The process requires time and man hours. It can result in lost revenue, particularly at daily-fee facilities, because the course must close while the work is in progress.

Golfers then may stay away for a stretch even after the course reopens. Superintendents are exploring alternatives to traditional aerification. There is a lot of lateral shattering going on. For instance, some turf managers may desire deeper holes to break up a layer of organic material that might be present where holes were punched in the past using solid tines. The most common depth is in the 4- to 5-inch range. The holes are spaced at adjustable intervals. There is a little bit of sand residue left. Not every grain of sand gets into that hole. Because the holes filled are virtually instantaneously, a superintendent could theoretically begin work on their front nine in the early morning hours and have those holes open for play by afternoon, a big difference from having to shut the greens down for a stretch of time following a core aeration.

The amendment consists of sand-sized particles of material, creating a mixture that might be as much as 90 to 95 percent sand, the remainder being the amendments. The particles are 74 percent pore space, 39 percent capillary water pores and 35 percent non-capillary air pores. Mirimichi Green manufactures CarbonizPN, a soil enhancer it markets as an amendment, which, among other things, reduces soil compaction and water needs while also optimizing soil pH. It has the ability to hold air, water and nutrients within its pore structure, and makes them available to the plant when they are needed.

The two products, when used in tandem, have a significant impact on the soil profile, Cowden says. The structure of the crystalized carbon, which Cowden describes as resembling a honeycomb, holds air in some of its pore spaces, thereby allowing improved air circulation in areas where organic material may have accumulated over time.

Having an aerobic root zone is just as important as having moisture down there. The process is catching on with superintendents throughout the country. He used it again this past May. Another treatment was scheduled for Nov. Tritabaugh and his team do not use an amendment during the process.

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Instead, the holes are filed with percent sand. Some have raised the question of whether DryJect will supplant traditional aeration as a standard industry practice. Apparently, saying thanks is the thing to do. But do these luminaries even know what they are thanking the superintendent for? Will a shout-out from Jim Nantz or Johnny Miller make or break your career?


Do these big shots — hell, does anybody — actually know what a superintendent does? I do, and so on behalf of golfers everywhere, here is a heartfelt thanks for all you do. Which includes …. Given that this is the season of giving thanks, I ask that you stop and consider all the reasons you have to be thankful. And, very importantly, make the effort to thank those around you — at work, at home, at play. I am thankful for every one of you, and what you do day in and day out.

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Thank you for upholding the unselfish spirit of our profession and the genuine camaraderie of our industry. It is unique, not only in golf, but throughout the world. I have been talking a lot about the high cost of irrigation systems and I am at it again this month, hopefully this time to belie some misconceptions. As discussed, a bit last month, most irrigation designers try and provide a golf course irrigation system that meets the needs and wishes of the course maintenance staff.

That comes with a price. Price is dependent on many factors, but mostly the number of sprinklers. The number of sprinklers then determines pipe size, pump station capacity and how large the control system needs to be. Optional items such as sensors and lightning protection then add to that cost. You develop a design based on your needs and present the price to the board or owner, and they say it is too expensive.

How do you convince them of that? But what is the difference between a Cadillac, a Chevy and even a Suzuki irrigation system? A base irrigation system will be sprinklers and swing joints, pipe and fittings, controls and wiring. A Suzuki is single row fairway system in many places, a double row a Chevy, a triple row a Buick and a five-row fairway in and out a Cadillac. So, unless you have an in and out system on your fairways, you have room to spend even more money. Isolation is another area where you can differentiate. Isolating greens and tees is basic as well as the fairways laterals.

Isolating quick couplers is stepping up. Mainline isolation per hole is a Cadillac; isolation every two to three holes is a Chevy. Control systems can also vary, although not all manufacturers have varying levels of control systems available. I will pick on Rain Bird here as it easily illustrates my point. Cirrus, Nimbus and Stratus central control systems: basically Suzuki, Chevy, Cadillac, respectively, subject to interpretation. The more features, the more capacity.

The more levels, the more expensive and the more powerful. Fittings are another good example. HDPE pipe, Suzuki all saddles; Chevy a combination of saddles and fabricated fittings; Cadillac a combination of saddles, molded fittings and compression fittings. Of course, there are many other pieces of irrigation equipment that can be part of an irrigation system that many professionals would say are not necessary and portray the system as a Cadillac. Two weather stations as opposed to one, although today maybe as opposed to none; soil moisture sensors; five remote radios versus two or three; iPads versus radios; brass quick coupler swing joints versus PVC; lightning disconnect systems and bunker irrigation systems.

The same can be said for the pump station. Two or three main pumps versus three or four mains; a jockey and a pressure maintenance pump versus just a pressure maintenance pump; back up soft starters versus across the line; computer touch screen or just a touch screen; premium efficiency motors or standard; web-based monitoring, radio or hard wired? The list can go on and on. Depending on your course and your clientele, you may not consider these choices as options. You may view some of them — or most of them — as a necessity. To get what you want, you need to become a salesman.

Optional features need to be explained as to why they are important for your golf course. For example, a five-row system with ins and outs on the fairways might be needed as you are tight on water and it will save substantial water or your customers like hard, firm fairways and lush, green rough — you cannot do that with a double row system that waters both at the same.