$2.6B needed for Utah to reach per-pupil national education spending average

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  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    May 24, 2013 10:24 p.m.

    It is interesting how so many on this message board try to justify underfunding public education. Lets see we look and say that because Washington DC spends the most money per student and they don't have the highest test scores that must mean that money doesn't matter. We act as if every student that comes to school is exactly the same and anxious willing and excited to learn. We act like language barriers and socio-economic differences don't matter. The reality is that money does matter. It lowers class size, which allows for more personal attention. It give the teachers more tools at their disposal. It gives them a bigger paycheck so they can spend more time grading papers and writing lesson plans, and less time needed to work a second or third job.

    Money spent on public education will never show a direct correlation to test scores, but only fools really believe that money doesn't matter. Only those who value money more than their children would support a system where the more kids you have in the system, the less you pay for education. What happened to personal responsibility.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    May 23, 2013 7:18 p.m.

    Per pupil spending is a meaningless and useless statistic.

    What needs to be answered is: how much exactly does take to educate a pupil?

    a question the left does not want answered.

    Spending and more spending is all they care about no wonder we have such shockingly huge national debt debt.

    Spending is not a measuring stick.

  • spicey saltlakecity, UT
    May 23, 2013 7:12 p.m.

    I am willing to spend 18 trillion pesos of your money for a high quality education,just like BENJAMIN FRANKLIN DID. This is not fair!

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    May 23, 2013 12:10 p.m.

    Unfortunately articles like this do not reflect the simple truth. Spending more money on education does not improve outcomes. In many areas Utah has outpaced the rest of the US in education while spending less. There is no study out there that shows that spending more than what Utah currently does will lead to better results.

    There is a study out there that shows that since the 1980's we have doubled (adjusted for inflation) the per pupil education spending in Utah. The results show that there has been virtually no change in outcomes.

    So, if money is not the key, what is? I would bet that it has more to do with families and local culture than it does with spending money.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    May 23, 2013 10:29 a.m.

    My oh my! I see more repubs using the excuse that they shouldn't have to pay taxes because they had too many kids. Now they must rely on government deductions and handouts for survival. Here's a tip: don't have more kids than you are able to support.

    Here in Utah, our tax code encourages a level of promiscuity and accountability that just isn't sustainable. You cannot have families of 6+ anymore without being highly subsidized by the government. It also punishes those who behave and act responsibly.

    Instead of skipping out on accountability, lets have those folks actually pay for their decisions. I am tired of my tax dollars going to bail out someone's poor decision to have sexual relations without birth control. Perhaps we need sex education in this state?

    Oh who am I kidding? Repubs hate education. They would rather have all the sexual relations and kids as possible and have "others" subsidize them. It's always easier to ask others to pay for your taxes.

  • JSB Sugar City, ID
    May 23, 2013 9:13 a.m.

    Floyd Johnson: Your comment makes sense. We had six children. There was no way I could spend as much on each of them as people who had only one or two children. But our children weren't neglected. They all went to college, most have masters' degrees and are productive citizens. In education as well as in raising children, it isn't so much how much we spend, but in how wisely we spend it.

  • Floyd Johnson Broken Arrow, OK
    May 23, 2013 8:55 a.m.

    Utah is last in spending only when considering per-pupil spending. When considered based on a percentage of total state budget, Utah ranks number 10. Spending an additional billion dollars on education would put Utah in the number one spot.

  • JSB Sugar City, ID
    May 23, 2013 8:46 a.m.

    There are now excellent on-line home schooling programs in which participating children consistently out perform public schooled children. Perhaps the state should consider encouraging home schooling by giving parents who home school a stipend of about half of what the public schools receive per student. With some well-trained home school advisers to assist when a parent has a problem with a child, many of our children could get a much better education at half the cost of trying to educate a child in an over-crowded public school classroom.

  • Million Bluffdale, UT
    May 23, 2013 7:21 a.m.

    A family of 8 children basically pays nothing (due to tax deductions from having a lot of dependents) toward their education (all Utah income tax goes towards education) and with large families in Utah there is no correlation between children in school and their parents paying for their kid's education. I would think it better to have a limit on around 4 dependent deductions to help pay for education for the many children. Ironically polygamist are allowed to deduct their large amounts of children (over 30 in Tom Greens case) and pay nothing to the state but drain the system exponentially.

  • ManInTheMiddle SANDY, UT
    May 22, 2013 9:58 p.m.

    There is nothing I'd rather spend my money on than education. Please double my property taxes and use the funds to buy better teachers and better administrators.

    Utah schools are inferior and it's because we hire the wrong adults.

    Teachers in our schools today are inferior to the teachers we had 30 years ago. If we want to attract talented people to teach we have to pay them more. Ask today's teachers, they will tell you that 20% or more of their colleagues have no business getting over 1,000 hours/year of our kid's time.

    Fire the worst teachers. Pay the best ones more.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    May 22, 2013 9:51 p.m.

    Let's have the teachers work for free...heck, let's make them pay for the privilege of teaching our youth. Let's stack 60 kids in the classroom as well. Less money, as argued so well here, should get top results. I mean, we'll likely create some Rhodes Scholars.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    May 22, 2013 8:28 p.m.

    No amount of spending will ever satisfy the Democrats, teachers unions and education establishment bureaucrats.

    Nor should the spending of any other state be cited as a necessity for us to spend a dollar more than we do now.

    Look at what is essential for educating students, not featherbed unions jobs, or bloated staffs in the administrative hierarchy, and fund the items that deliver the best educational value in the classroom. Eliminate funding for non-value added overhead fluff.

    Then fire the few bad or ineffective teachers, and most of the administrative staff, and we can provide quality education within current budget levels.

    Until every Utah taxpayer gets more money in their paycheck, the schools should not take any more of the taxpayers' hard earned dollars.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    May 22, 2013 7:14 p.m.

    @ Christoph. Is our military spending sustainable? Can the police really protect you from criminals? The honest answers to both questions is no and no. Back to education, we spend more money on education in America than any other nation except the Swiss and the results of all our spending? Private schools, even home schooling almost always far outperforms public schools. My point is that government has no competition and no incentive to produce anything well or inexpensively, and that is the problem. $17 trillion debt is compelling evidence, don't you think? Thanks for your thoughts.

  • samhill Salt Lake City, UT
    May 22, 2013 6:33 p.m.

    "To match Washington, D.C. — currently the highest per-pupil spending rate in the country — Utah would need more than $8 billion, which would require a 19.8 percent income tax rate and an additional annual household cost of $13,013."


    When I saw the comparison above, D.C. compared to Utah, with the implicit recommendation that Utah spend as much, I almost choked with laughter.

    I realize that the rest of the article included analysis that pointed out what a miserable and grotesquely wasteful failure all that spending has been in our nation's capital (and so telling of the atmosphere of decadent dysfunctionality there). But to see the numbers so boldly displayed, as though we would have **any** reason to emulate the education system in Washington D.C., is blatantly, and laughably, ridiculous.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    May 22, 2013 5:29 p.m.

    Mountanman: do you include the military in your disregard for government spending? Policemen? Border patrol? Our military does a fine job; as do others in public sector.

  • Bored to the point of THIS! Ogden, UT
    May 22, 2013 4:54 p.m.

    Why would we invest in our children's education?

    Let's spend money on lawyers and such as we continue to sue the federal government over any and all issues we can thing of. That's money well spent!

    Let's build a new prison. Those citizens, who already had a chance and messed up, are more deserving of 'new and better' than our kids. That's money well spent!

    Education... really?

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    May 22, 2013 4:45 p.m.

    In the private sector providing superior goods and services for less money and time are necessary for their growth and even survival. In any government run organization the more money they spend and the more inferior their results the more they grow. Thus is the problem with government, it is inefficient, ineffective and eventually totally unsustainable compared to private education, or anything else.