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Comments about ‘Committee approves two bills to fund schools through tax reform’

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Published: Monday, Feb. 10 2014 5:37 p.m. MST

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Kings Court
Alpine, UT

The Utah Taxpayers Association ought to just be quiet on the issue. They have lost all credibility over tax policy when they refused to comment on the prison relocation boondoggle. They seem to think it is fine to soak the taxpayer with almost one billion dollars to move the prison so a few developers can make bank, but when it comes to tax fairness, they seem to have an issue with it.

freedomingood
provo, Utah

That seems fair. If you are going to vote for conservatives then you should pay for things like a conservative.

worf
Mcallen, TX

Just different ways of stealing from people without being noticed.

David
Centerville, UT

I don't like paying taxes anymore than anyone else. But we must fund education in this state.

So lets get serious. I believe education is top heavy with administrators. We need a more efficient administrative system. We could save money and get it to the classroom and teachers who deserve to be paid more.

Next, restore the property tax for education only. Stop diverting property tax revenue for transportation. Which legislator(s) own transportation-related businesses?

After stream-lining and cleaning the flow of money for education, lets see if there is still a shortage. If so, raise more revenue for education.

But to simply raise taxes "for education" and then not get those dollars to education won't help Utah. Or to raise taxes but spend an inordinate amount for administration won't help either.

The state is responsible for education. It is the governor and state legislature that must be accountable.

Carolyn Sharette
Sandy, UT

Money is not the problem in education. It also is not the answer.

Are there any excellent schools that do an outstanding job on the money they are given? Clearly, yes. This being the case, then the problem with our schools is not a lack of money. It is a lack of the expertise required to implement what those outstanding schools are offering.

New money will serve to provide yet another distraction from the real problem: the lack of expertise at some schools that has nothing to do with money.

Money is not the problem with our schools. It also is not the answer to the challenges they face.

beehive801
Salt Lake City, UT

If you're going to increase taxes by $100 million, Sen. Osmond, why don't you just put it toward increasing the WPU, which is already "equalized"? Put the money where it will make a difference for every single student. Enough with the smoke and mirrors already.

Steven S Jarvis
Orem, UT

Carolyn Sharette makes a valid point. Our teachers in Utah too often are provisional and lack adequate training. We also have too many schools that are failing to make adequate progress to get kids on track to function on grade level by the time they graduate. Throwing money at the problem is nice and all, but doing so without identifying the problem results in waste.

I feel strongly that there are MANY causes to why our kids graduate without mastering basic skills. Here are just a few:

Lack of quality instruction
Lack of teacher training/professionalism
Lack of seat time
Too much wasted time leading to less instruction

Owl
Salt Lake City, UT

Liberal (socially and not politically) democracies fund public education under the assumption that all people benefit from an educated citizenry. Under Sen. Jones' bill the assumption is that those with children pay more of their own way and therefore those not having children could legitimately argue that they should pay less. Singling out larger families to pay more taxes contradicts long standing policies of liberality in our society. Raise taxes on everyone to fund public education since we all benefit, not just struggling young families.

Confused
Sandy, UT

Steven Jarvis said:
Lack of quality instruction
Lack of teacher training/professionalism
Lack of seat time
Too much wasted time leading to less instruction

Let me first say that you need to do a little more investigation of what is required of teachers in the State of Utah.

The Board of Education requires every teacher to have:
1. Around 60 hours of professional training( I believe it is around 60).
They can get that through a variety of ways like taking on line class from local university to classes offered both by the state and district.
2. Each teacher is evaluated in their instruction methods every three years by the current supervisor. If the Principal feels they need work on their methods, they discuss it and how to resolve it. If they do not improve they dismissed. Jordan has one of the hard teacher evaluations in the State (JPASS). It is not easy to pass this class.
3. The class days is set by the legislature, currently sitting at 180 days... if you want more seat time, then call them.

One thing I noticed is that you left the responsibility of the parents off the list, the teacher can only do so much without parents involvement.

TheOcean
SPRINGVILLE, UT

Let me add:

Lack of quality classroom materials (funding)
Lack of current technology (funding)
Lack of timely teacher feedback due to class sizes of 40+ (funding)
Lack of consistent academic counseling and timely intervention (funding)
Lack of ongoing professional development (funding)
Lack of legislative accountability (funding)
Lack of expertise at schools facing challenges that “excellent” schools don’t face (funding)

Lack of money is one of the problems facing most of our schools. It is one of the answers to many of the challenges they face.

I would welcome and support ongoing and sustainable sources of funding for public education.

Confused
Sandy, UT

I believe that Carolyn Sharette is correct to a point.
Throwing money at education is not "THE" answer, it is "part" of the answer for education.
Teachers work hard for the most part, just like in all employment, there are those that seem to "float" until retirement, but most work hard.

Teachers are require like I said (poorly written I apologize) previously, are evaluated by their principals every three year. Most district also have an evaluation process that must be met in order to have contract renewed.

The biggest issue that teachers face is parent lack of responsibility in holding their children accountable for their school work as well as their behavior in class. If a student is disruptive and the teacher tries to address it by sending the kid to the office, the parents get all offended and complain to the principal.

In today’s society, parents refuse to take responsibility for their children education. They feel the “teachers” should be doing it, not them. Simple things like reading with them at night to improve reading skills, helping them with math, science etc.

If parents would do this, education would be much improved without a single $$ being spent.

worf
Mcallen, TX

Utah is not alone.

Every state in the country talks test scores, and the need for more funding.

Evaluation of test scores is a big scam!

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