Many states use the lottery as a way to fund education. Maybe it is time for
Utah to be a bit progressive for the sake of our students. Lottery is a choice,
no one would be forced to spend anything, but I would rather see the money that
so many Utahns go spend in Malad on Powerball come back to our students instead
of going to Idaho.
In Utah, where there are so many conservatives that oppose increases in spending
and people trained in teaching that are not working as teachers is seems like a
better idea to push a public call for volunteerism in the schools. Wouldn't
that be better?
If it was as easy as taking more money from taxpayers, Utah would be at the
bottom of every academic measurement such as graduation and ACT scores. The
truth is that even with the lowest spending PER student, Utah is still in the
middle of the country in nearly every academic rating system. Now,
before everyone says I am saying something I didn't, let me add:Did I say being in the middle of the country is perfectly fine?Just don't tell me that spending it the key driver of success. If it
were, this state would be the worst academic state in the country and barack
would have established the most successful economy in the history of our
We need vouchers and Singapore math.
We always have been ready to pay more to fund our schools. The problem is that
the politicians that have to make it happen are more worried about getting
re-elected than they are about our schools. I will gladly pay a bit more in tax
to lower the class sizes and pay our teachers what they are worth.An
even better idea is to charge an impact fee on all new homes being built. Of
course to do that would require us to get rid of all the realtors that serve in
the state legislature to go along with it. That will never happen because it
will affect their own bottom line but it is an obvious thing to do. It is pathetic that a state that says it cares so much about their children
can be last in per pupil funding.
If Osmond's bill passes then the they will just not fund the regular WPU
because of the "new" money going directly to the schools. The problem
is that now the district will face increased costs for employee health benefits,
transportation costs, utility costs and other maintenance costs without any
increased funds to cover it.
I would much rather spend tax money to fund education, than spend $900 million
to build a new prison. Maybe if we invest in education now, there won't be
a need for more prisons later.
Chris B you are looking at it all wrong. Just think of where our state could be
if we would adequately fund our schools. I'm not saying go crazy like an
Obama spending spree but better than we are doing now. Instead of being
satisfied with a middle of the pack rating on the worst spending in the USA, we
could be the top in the country with middle of the pack spending.Money for sure makes a huge difference. We could be doing so much more and
achieving so much more. I hope I get to see it during my lifetime.
Utahns already spend 100% of their personal income tax to fund education. How
can you spend more than 100% and why don't we ever hear that
statistic...all we hear about is the per-pupil funding. Look at Washington DC
if you think just throwing money at it is the answer. Plus the revenues from
ABC go to education, too. From where is this additional money going to come?
No, not everyone has always been willing to pay more for education.
Davis County raised property taxes twice in double digits, even though many
protested at the public hearing, which was really a dog-and-pony show by
educators, held only to technically comply with the law.The answers
lie in education reform (fought against by the education lobby themselves---and
who really ought to champion the cause), increased parental involvement, and
year-round schools with teachers getting a 25 - 33% pay raise but working all
year, just like EVERYBODY ELSE. Those who hold the key to the solution fight
it. But that's been true for 50+ years. So let's hear yet
again.....which State has the lowest per-pupil funding.....?
As a 7th grade English teacher at a public school, my classroom is literally
overflowing with students--no joke, I have students sitting on the floor because
there is no more room to fit desks in my room, so they sit on the patch of
ground by my desk or near the door. Having taught classes with 25 and now
teaching classes of 40+, there's no doubt that I can be a hugely more
effective teacher with lower numbers. This is the number one problem in Utah
right now--not enough money to properly and effectively educate--it's more
crowd control now than anything. When will we get serious about teaching out
kids? If that day ever arrives, we could do some amazing things here in Utah,
I'm certain of it. Now? We struggle along and do the best we can while the
limited resources we have are being sunk into new standardized testing and new
software that rarely works.
Try this. Pay the families for the performance of their students. You will see
wonders. What is the ACT score of one student 30 worth to the state? If you paid
even half of that to the family one of the parents would be able to take time
off work and home school or use the money to hire a competent tutor to make it
happen. The public education system seems to be stuck around the score of 21, if
you throw exorbitant amounts of money at it it might give you 23, but it will
not give you 30. At home with parents on the ball 30 is easily achievable.
Orem Parent, if you are so willing to spend more for education just go ahead and
sent it to your local school district. I'm sure they will be thrilled to
have the extra revenue. The problem with that is it isn't something they
can count on every year, like taxes. The Davis District had a "one
time" funding source and they spent the money on something that was "on
going" so they had to raise property taxes to cover it every year after the
initial year. "One time funding" didn't compute for those using
the funds. And there's no way to make those doing such things accountable.
They even apologized for telling new teacher hires that they would need to pay
$100 a month for full coverage family health insurance. That's for 9
months of work, too. My insurance premiums that year were over $19,500. And
they carped about their "low benefits."
Please stop and think about what is being proposed. Any new tax or an increase
in a current tax is a greater burden on the parents in most cases, whose primary
role is to educate and raise their children. It is not the State's place to
make it more difficult for parents to parent, and in many cases cause them to
have greater financial hardship. I own a home and absolutely hate the fact that
property taxes exist. Private property essentially does not exist anymore and
the government is really leasing us what we think is ours. If you fail to pay
your taxes you risk losing your home. Private property is a basic right for all
Americans. I find this asinine that the citizens of this State continue to fund
our schools through property taxes. If you have children in school, step up and
pay for it. The more kids, the more you pay! It is called personal
responsibility. Lets step up and find better solutions for funding public
schools and let everyone who partakes in the system pay their share. I work in
public schools and believe higher tax burden is not the answer.
People keep saying the schools need more money but the way the schools currently
waste money indicates that the schools have plenty of money. Or else they are
poor stewards of the money they presently get. Studies show that student
participation in extra curricular activities (sports, clubs, debate, drama,
music, student government, student publications, etc.) is a better predictor of
long term success when compared to students who don't participate. But, of
all the extracurricular activities, inter school athletics is the most expensive
but gives the least benefit in terms of long term success. I'd feel more
supportive of more money for the schools if the schools didn't already
waste thousands and thousands of dollars on frivolous inter school athletics.
Why is no one pointing out the obvious Conservative Capitalist approach of
Jones's bill? She is saying pay for what you use. Stop using government
subsides to raise your kids. If you have kids you should pay a larger part for
their education. This is a great Conservative Capitalist idea, coming from a
Democrat of all people, pay for what you use. No Freebies in life, including
your child's education. If you want to have lots of kids then pay for them
and stop living beyond your means by relying on a tax of the old and single
people of Utah. I am a parent of 3 and feel I don't pay enough for their
There are an estimated 131 Billion barrels of shale oil in the Uinta Basin (77
Billion recoverable with current technology). Last year, 500,000 barrels per
day were produced in Alaska and the State raked in $6.3 Billion. All things
being equal the currently recoverable oil would yield $2.6 Trillion in revenue
for Utah. I know there would be variations, but just sayin'....By the way, 77 Billion barrels is almost twice the amount of recoverable
onshore crude oil in the US. (There is no shortage of resources, just a
shortage of ingenuity and political fortitude.)
Where is the data that would indicate more money would increase student academic
achievement, which is the primary purpose of our public schools? In fact, if
you study the amounts spent on education state to state, there really is no
correlation between what is spent and the academic outcomes.Having
run public charter schools for 12 years, now serving 3500 students at 5
campuses, I am quite sure that money is not the variable that is missing in Utah
schools. You find some schools highly successful on the same dollar
that other schools are failing with. Some schools are successfully teaching low
income and english language learner students, others are failing miserably.
They all are paid roughly the same amount to educate students.Until
we are willing to take a hard look at the successes and the failures and demand
that the low-performing schools reform their practices, I would not rush to
infuse schools with more money. Money is not the problem.We must
find the will to do what's best for kids. We must acknowledge where the
expertise lies, and then we must demand success from all schools. Money may
only serve to distract us from this vital process.
Why not invest in our teachers? Teachers are burning out and leaving the
profession for multiple reasons. @toosmartforyou - did you know that most
teachers do work over the summer in one form or another. Most use their own
(unpaid and voluntary) time during the summer to prepare for the upcoming school
year. Many take professional development courses, often paying for them out of
their own pockets. Others take summer jobs to supplement their income.
The unfortunate problem in public education is that you don't get what you
pay for. And you won't know it (don't ask me why you never see it)
until it's too late and the taxes are fixed.
Vouchers and parental choice will do more to help our schools than anything
Instead of either of these proposed tax increases, why not accept Energy
Solutions offer of 1/2 Billion dollars so they can accept the same kind of waste
they are accepting now, only it would come from a foreign source, then invest
this money and use the earnings towards education?
For the most part people from Utah are not willing to pay more. Most of them
believe the state should educate their 'huge' families for free.
"Low performing schools reform their practices?" I have yet to see a
school staff refuse to review their teaching practices in the hopes of doing a
better job with their students. With that said let's take a look at a few
practices that work, if you have the will to follow thru. Insist
upon following thru with school district attendance policies. Students who
don't attend get dropped. They can come back the following semester.
Students who misbehave consistently get dropped. They are interfering in the
learning of others. They can also come back the next semester. Insist upon professional attire from your educators. If you want to be taken
seriously as a teacher don't dress like your students. Finally,
don't just teach the material. Teach young people. Give respect, regardless
of their age. Expect respect. Turn learning into a joyful event worthy of their
time.show relevance. Smile. And students, we understand your issues. Just
remember schools are for learning,not for being babysat.
People homeschool and give their kids a better education. I don't think
money is the answer. Unions require too much of our tax dollars for pensions,
benefits etc.... I also don't think if your kids are out of school, you
should have to pay taxes for education. Vouchers for those with kids and leave
us that raised ours, put them through college....alone. So tired of politics
being the answer. Parents step up and take control of your children's
Are you (DesNews) ever going to prove a correlation between more money and
better students? In the 30 years I've lived in Utah, this pumping for money
has gone on every year. Prove the correlation, then we'll talk.
No, not no, Ice Cream Sandwich! "You get what you pay for" works in
every other walk of life, but not education. In education it's called
"throwing money at it".
Why can't we have parents pay a small tuition fee? Have it go directly to
the school before government gets its hands on it.When people have
children, they should bare some responsibility for raising them. Feeding and
educating should be a part of it.
@Health Teacher - your property taxes pay for services we ALL use in order to
live a comfortable life within our private residence. Roads, utilities,
fire/police services, and so many other services and infrastructure all of us
rely on are paid through property taxes because without these services the
quality of our private residence ecosystem would be diminished.
Polls like this don't matter at all because lawmakers don't care about
you or me. With our current system, the caucus delegates are the only people who
matter to our legislators. In Utah, the real election comes during the
Republican primary, and only caucus delegates get to vote. Once you've made
it through the republican primary, you are basically a shoe-in for office. There
are some pockets of Utah that democrats actually get a chance, but in 98% of the
state, once you win the republican primary, you are in like Flynn.This is EXACTLY why we need a direct primary! Sign the Count My Vote petition!
As a BYU fan, I can't believe I'm going to agree with Chris B. Spending does not equal quality education. I'm from Utah and have
since lived in PA, NY, an now IN. The kids in Utah schools are just as educated
(if not more) as the kids in all these other states, despite spending the least
per pupil on education. The real difference comes from the time and effort
parents put into their own kids education and not leaving it up entirely to the
schools. Too much money into the system breeds corruption. I dare
you to take a good look at NY schools.
If I were living in Utah, I would want to see line-item school district budgets
before voting in any tax increases.Schools where I live, and schools
in all other places too, always have several spending categories that are
dictionary definitions of the phrase "fraud, waste and abuse." As one example here, a city near me discovered in the last year or two that if
they stopped their fake "green" practice of using whatever containers
they were using for milk and put milk back in the standard cardboard containers
I used as a kid, they'd save a quarter-million a yesr--which is 4 or 5
teachers a year, every single year. Start by fixing a few of those
in every district, and you suddenly have oodles of money. One example would be
football --unless it's a break-even proposition where you live instead of a
giant money sink.
I hear many arguments for both sides, but may I offer this: I, as a taxpayer,
am being bled dry. I have no more to give. I need to feed my family. I am so
sorry that we cannot educate our children, but how about letting me feed my
children without having to be on welfare?Also, why can foreign
countries (Japan) have such large classes, much larger than ours, and still have
competitive students in the world market? Could it be the entitlement
mentality? I don’t have the answer to that, but...
I would be willing to pay more....if I had even a scintilla of faith it would
actually make a difference.I hear from my kids what they get
"points" and "extra credit" for not to mention all the half
days, early outs, and days off. It is a joke. These teachers adjust the
expectation down to the lowest common denominator to make sure the kids pass.
And I am in one of the supposed best school districts.It is silly to
think that throwing more money down a rat hole is going to change the low
expectation that exists today for what students actually learn.I pay
the teacher more money and suddenly they are a better teacher? Don't
think so.If the money was going to be spent on an
"accountability" and "outcomes" division then I might consider
an increase.The problem is that even when you report the ridiculous
expectations of these teachers nothing is done about it because the union makes
it too onerous to get rid of lazy teachers so we have too many coasting and not
I have a better solution that does not require raising taxes.How
about we cut every position within a district with the word "specialist"
in its title. Cutting the district staff in half will make more money available
to the schools. In the schools keep the prinicpal vice principal,
lunch ladies, and janitors. If a person does not fit into those categories, give
them a teaching position. If they do not have a classroom of their own, get rid
of them or give them a class.See how simple it is, and taxes
don't have to be raised.
RedShirtCalTech,I have an even better idea, we really don't
care about the education of our children because it might cost us a few pennies,
so lets do away with public education completely! Let parents take
responsibility for their children if they have the money and are willing to pay
for a decent education they can find a private school, if not lets bring back
some of those jobs we have outsourced to third world countries and put our
children to work in American run sweat shops. That way American business can
squeeze even a little more profit out by not having to pay shipping costs to
bring their goods back to America.
Terra Nova there is NOT a single study which shows that vouchers and choice
improve student outcomes. If you know of one, then please cite it.
To answer a couple pf the questions:1. Of course home schooled
children are better educated, they get one on one interaction and feedback from
their teacher. Thanks for proving the point about class sizes!2.
Football makes money for most large high schools. Many academic programs are
funded by the revenue brought in by football and basketball.
As a mother of 6 and a full time teacher, I can tell you where the problem lies.
Public education is not going to get better. You can throw money at this
problem and it will never improve. The problems with education have nothing to
do with the classroom, in fact, teachers are better educated today than they
were 10 years ago. We know what to look for, we know how to help students etc.
What we will never be able to do is solve the underlying family issues that
plague our society. Parents and administration are always screaming about
accountability. Many teachers, myself included, work with students day in and
day out to provide the highest quality education, because we love kids. What I
can't fix are kids who decide that class is playtime. that homework is not
fun, so not worth it, and that the most important aspects of life involve
sitting in front of a screen to be entertained. Until we do something serious
about parents being accountable for the actions of their children, and that
education is important enough to spend the necessary time to make it happen, it
will not improve. Money can't fix this!
Let parents pay for a small tuition fee.Just that simple.
In my experience as a teacher, home-schooled or charter schooled students to not
always equate to better educated. You have to be very disciplined as a parent
to properly homeschool a child. I have known several families who
"home-school" children who can't read and write as well as their
public schooled peers. I have also known brilliant students who were
home-schooled, it depends upon the parent who is doing the teaching.
In the past 5 years, I have seen bills in the legislature aimed at teacher
accountability. We get very little pay for what we do compared to other degreed
professions, and everyone in Utah thinks this is ok.I could take large
class sizes, long hours and lack of respect from others IF....-Students
came prepared to learn, and were not distracting others everyday.-Students
completed assignments on time and with a good attitude about learning.-Students were expected to attain a certain level in every grade, and were not
allowed to move up grades without attaining that certain level.Students
could be suspended for lack of preparedness and poor behavior. Those wanting to
return to school to pay a fine....add those fines up, this could make some
revenue.-Parents were not either absent or helicoptering every move that
teachers make, complaining about teachers being mean or unfair when their child
did not get to participate in fun activities that they didn't earn.
With the bar being raised to asinine levels for teachers, isn't it about
time for students and parents to hold some of the accountability as well?
It cost over twenty thousand dollars per student in New York, and New Jersey,
for a school year. We spend more money on education than all countries
combined.If money meant better education,--why do we have so many
living in poverty, and are unemployed? Why so many on food stamps?
To "teachermom6" and how do you propose we change the attitudes that
.To fund Utah state runs school a waste-Utah schools are not up to the standards
many school to the east of the rocky mountains. My daughter was struggling in
Indiana taking advance math spending hour or more 6 days a week, went to Weber
High did little to get straight As in calculus which she may have received if
she put in 1-2 hours aweek as her brother did who was better in math than she.
When i lived in Utah 30 years ago a fellow employee from Missouri told me the
same thing I did not believe it until I say it in my own kids in the high school
level. Beside Utah spends as much as Indiana does, and Utah does not have the
ghetto/hood problems which more than compensate the child to adult ratio State run schools in Utah? no fund vouchers
@Orem Parent--define adequate funding. How much money does education need?Perhaps, adequate management of funds, would be a more accurate term.