Getting Utah's schools out of the FEDERAL education system is THE most
important thing we can do. We've had our taxes raised over and over and yet
we hear this same song again. Make Utah's parents poorer—that's
the answer. And don't forget these taxes will be applied to our kids
without their say. So this is taxation without representation for generations.
There are freedom-based solutions. I wish Mr. Anderson was brave enough to argue
for [real] change.
In Baltimore it is $15,000 per pupil and 16 high schools with mostly black
students can barely read at the third grade level. So it is more than money. I
have read that students should be taught cursive and phonetics. I like the idea
of school choice as that improves a competitive spirit. As for low
salaries I have two family members who would love to become school teachers do
as well as they do.
To anyone who claims "throwing more money at it" won't solve the
problems: throwing less money hasn't worked.That's what Utah has
been doing for the last thirty years; progressively throwing less and less money
at public elementary, middle and high schools. And that's not working.Using income tax to pay for public schools is flawed because then funding is
less reliable. As the state economy is stressed funding is cut, as the state
economy is robust, instead of increasing funding our tax dollars are given back
the the "people who know how to spend it better than government". Property taxes are a more stable form of funding. (gasp!)Larger families
require larger homes, right? If larger homes have higher property taxes to pay
for local schools, then those larger families pay their fair share; doesn't
that seem logical? And business property tax can help pay for educating the
employees they need to hire. Worried about tax increases? You've been
paying a tax "decrease" for far too long and it's time to catch up.
Want to privatize schools? And you think that will result in lower taxes?
Scoff. What a joke. Think competition is the answer? Public schools are not
Can any of the liberals out there tell me why we need to spend more on
Education? Right now the US spends more per pupil than any other nation, and we
get some of the lowest international test score. If spending more on healthcare
is so bad, why is it so right for Education?Some of you complain
about class size, but in places like Korea they have equally large classrooms
yet outperform their US counterparts.When you look at the
educational outcome predictors, things that can be fixed by spending more on
education are low on that list. The best predictor of educational outcome is
parent involvement. So tell us, how does raising taxes improve parent
involvement?To "Husker2" here is a great example. In Utah
we spend nearly as much per child as what it costs to send a child to Challenger
School. The kids that go to Challenger score higher on their ACT scores than
the public school ones.
Vouchers are a great idea. Parents could select the school for their child and
the school would get the money. The competition would weed out the schools
which are doing a poor job.
I suggest the money go to rewarding students who do well. But, rather than
money, make it credits to pay costs of further education or skills training,
such as apprenticeships in a trade.
I would feel better about this proposal if BUSINESSES that need these trained
and educated workers would, instead of demanding tax breaks, actually start to
fund education themselves. It's awfully easy to spend someone else's
money for your private agenda. (A wonderful example of that is recycling where
people furnish all the raw goods and then pay Company "X" to pick up the
goods at their street-side containers after all the stuff has been sorted by
"those who are responsible stewards over the environment" so Company
"X" doesn't have to do that, and then any profits go straight into
the pockets of the owners of Company "X". If there aren't any
profits, Company "X" tells the city they need to charge and collect more
for recycling. It's a scam.The per-pupil-funding argument is
at least 50 years stale. Let's talk about the 100% State Income Tax
funding, highest in the nation, and see how more money hasn't been the
answer in places like Washington, DC.Banks and business need to put
up funds too when trying to get into everyone else's pockets. Banks are
used to making all the rules to benefit themselves. Vote against this proposal.
The biggest problem to education in Utah? Parental apathy. Way too many people
are quick to blame state and local government leaders for the failings of public
education when people should be taking a hard look at themselves. Where are each
of you after your child comes home from school? Who is ensuring that your child
completes their school work? How distracted are you from your child?
Proponents of the diversion of hundreds of millions of dollars from highway
funding to schools don't even vaguely understand transportation funding.
This, [car users don't pay all their costs],. ruse has been
used many times in order force higher costs on drivers while under funding the
roads that the overwhelming majority of travelers use. The usual beneficiary is
not mass-transit that will never break even; the real gainers are the folks who
want to reshape our economy and our culture into progressive channels... make
that progressive future visions.If billions of dollars of federal
transportation aid had not been wasted on poorly performing rail projects, our
highways would have received that much and more to build a long overdue freeways
along the Wasatch Front. Northern Utah has for decades had the best
and most productive urban freeways in America, ranking number ONE in annuals of
statistical data by Congressional Quarterly . That has pointed the way to
increased freeway investment to benefit the 99% solution. Instead, in 1995 our
Mayors chose to build upon the 1% mass transit solution, UTA spends
$400+ million yearly with little benefit. Target them!
the BIG drop off in public education occurs at the Jr High level on up. The
education is horrible. Teachers aren't motivated because they make so
little. Maybe the only solution is to re-think education and turn to private and
charter schools. The US can't compete with Japan or India or China in
education scores. It's getting worse not better. One thing is certain --
throwing more money at a failed system isn't going to solve anything.
@WonderBoyWhen you say “lowered quality”, can you give
some examples? I’m a high school teacher so I’ve seen
hundreds of teachers doing their job, and I would estimate that 98% of them do a
terrific job. Definitely high quality. The problem I see is a) high turnover
because teachers leave Utah or leave the profession altogether and b) students
do not do the assignments and studying necessary to be successful. They play
sports and perform in plays and go to their weeknight church meetings, but they
don’t do the work the teacher asks them to do. Then, when the student
does poorly on standardized tests, the teacher gets the blame.
The main problem with schools is not lack of funding.The main
problem with schools is that they are a government/union monopoly devoid of any
competition.Like other monopolies, they suffer from 2 problems: High
costs and lowered quality.High costs. Lowered Quality.HIGH COSTS. LOWERED QUALITY.This is the world you chose, Utah,
when you rejected vouchers. Now you're paying for it--and you'll
continue to pay for it.Public education is a money pit and that will
never change. If you want better results, privatization and market
dynamics is the way to go.
Rick has some great ideas. I'm lucky because I can afford private school
and tutors for my 2 kids. Large families should pay their fair share.
Carman, we completely agree with you. And overseas is so much better than
eastern states schools as well. Sadly, Utah is a bottom-feeder. However, more
and more we are seeing people who believe the education isn’t necessary
and isn’t serving our children well, k-12 AND university. That we are
just babysitting children through grade 12 and then for-profit universities are
benefiting from teaching nothing of value for future jobs....somehow we will
need to have a complete revolution along the lines of Elon Musk, Uber, Homie,
Southwest, Venmo, etc.
Nothing lasts forever. Public elementary and secondary schools are done,
cooked, stick a fork in them. Implement a voucher system as soon as possible.
Why is it, the only answer for improving education is to spend more and more
money, continuously raising my taxes, spending more, taxing more, on and on.
This crazy drum beat is never ever ending. Try something else, throwing endless
dollars at this bottomless pit will not do anything. Stop giving tax breaks to
large families that create this financial disaster. Hold students to a higher
standard, require competence to receive a diploma and graduate. Stop social age
promotion. Stop cumbaya inclusion of students in core classes who cannot and
will not ever perform. Remove student that have behaviors that destroy the
classroom learning environment. I know, these solutions are not politically
correct, we might hurt the feelings of the non performers.
State-mandated testing will not fix schools.A state level union will not
fix them.Nor will state directives....or state funding.Lower state taxes and allow local school districts to get their funding from
property taxes.The time has come to admit that the grand experiment
to have the state fund education has failed. It hasn't resulted in parity.
It hasn't aided performance. It hasn't managed the labor problem.It has failed. Give the matter back to the local school boards. Trust
the people of Panguich and Rose Park to use property tax funds to educate their
own kids.The state can't pick winners and losers. That
didn't work.But this will only work if the state gets out of
the business altogether and gives the money back to the people.
Wow! A lot of time and energy has already been spent by the Governor and
legislators showing the flaws in the gas tax; electic vehicles don’t pay
any, etc. The debate is what to replace it with. Scott and Gail should catch up
a little before they throw out a proposal.
How much (or little) of the proposed additional $150/pupil funding will get into
the classroom, raising what schools now pay teachers?I doubt if much
will. It seldom has before. School districts have often channeled funds
elsewhdte in the past. I'm sure they will, yet again.
Former teacher. Fixing he schools doesn’t come from increase in funds. We
need to get better teacher training programs. Parents need to help their kids.
Teachers in some subjects need to give less homework. We need to
make it play for kids to get b’s and c’s. Too many teachers let kids
make up work for full credit or give so much extra credit that the grades mean
nothing. Parents don’t care about their child learning, they just want the
A so they big you about extra credit.
Not everyone can be president of a bank, an airline pilot or a skilled
craftsman. So why do we think all people who attend public education are the
same, and a one size/program fits them all?I do not favor throwing
money at education as if the problem was solved by increasing the numbers on a
teacher’s W-2 form. In my opinion, education has suffered
from decades of social experimentation in the hiring of adults from various
academic and cultural backgrounds to “teach” or
“administer” without due regard for ability. Format and content of
subject matter have changed based upon legislative whim, political correctness
and a focus on “rights” over responsibilities of those receiving the
education program content. Give me a clear vision of what you want
accomplished with a plan that is objective, measurable and verifiable and maybe
I’ll be in favor of another tax, otherwise forget about it.
There would be an immediate increase in funding for real education if state
funds could not be used for inter school sports. If a district wants inter
school sports, the district would have to pay for it by a voter approved bond.
Then all the dollars that are currently being wasted in inter school sports
could be used to increase teacher pay, hire more teachers, etc.
While I have the utmost respect for Mr. Anderson and Ms. Miller, simply giving
education more money will not achieve better results. Education funding has
nearly tripled over the last 20 years and test scores have remained flat.
Without some level of accountability and reward for performance nothing will
change. Until the bureaucracy gets out of the way of the teachers, nothing will
change. Our teachers are hamstrung by a top-heavy, top-down model and are
discouraged from and sometimes punished for introducing any innovation into
classrooms. Independent individual thought by teachers is not welcome. More
decisions need to be made at the classroom level where the teachers and parents
who know the children best can decide on strategies to achieve better results.
As long as education is centrally controlled by the State Office of Education
with little autonomy given to districts, almost no autonomy given to the local
school and zero autonomy given to teachers, results in education will remain
stagnant as the bureaucracy will suck up every new dollar while only pennies
make it into the classroom, and those only with a host of strings attached
unrelated to improvement.
Proper school funding is certainly important and we need to do a lot better in
Utah. However, what about the parent and student responsibilities for
educational success? As a teacher, I present information in the most effective
way I can. The burden then falls on the student (under the supervision of a
parent/guardian) to show up to class prepared, do assignments, and study for
tests. When I give homework, I’m lucky if 20% of my students turn it in,
let alone by the due date. That’s on the students and parents.
People were educated better back when funding was a lot less. I know, this was
many years ago probably 50-60 years or so. What is really needed is more effort
on the part of students and their parents. Some already put out effort. You can
see it in their school work. Turn off the TV; put away cell phones and video
games until grades improve. Parents may have to do the same to spend time with
their children. I'm beginning to get the impression most of these folks put
education towards the bottom of their list. If educators are unwilling to put
the responsibility where it belongs, then those educators are failing, too.
The best approach to increasing school funding would have been to get it on the
ballot based on the tax changes included in the voter initiative. The gas tax
just seems like another scheme by the legislature to bait and switch on the
voters, with the funds to be routed to their favorite road projects after a few
years. After all, gas taxes are for roads aren't they. The other take away
from this situation should be, don't trust the legislature and start an
initiative only to bargain it away. If voters support an initiative they do not
want you to trade it away in a back room.
The tax increase doesn't specify where the money will go, offers no metrics
for improvement, and provides no recourse if there are no improvements. Not even
an assurance there won't be demands for even more money next year.No bank or banker would lend its money to such a flimsy proposition. But since
it is other peoples money, I guess our local elites are ok with not having any
real plan.With the dishonest way the vote on Prop 1 tax increase is
being ignored and higher train taxes imposed on so many, no more taxes.
Yawn - Yet ANOTHER article trying to convince us to willingly pay more tax
dollars.Education? Yes, we ALL want the kids better educated;
however -- how much is enough??How much of an increase in public
education funds will go to administrators, or worse yet, more state
"overseers"? That is a valid question, and is NEVER answered when
public education receives yet another increase.Why does the writer
believe that if people vote for a gas tax increase that the money not used by
the Utah Highway Commission will go to education?WHY wouldn't
the highway commission NOT want all the tax increase??The better
question is: why can't government stick to a budget just like the rest of
We need to stop pretending that our schools are good in Utah. We moved from
back east into some of the best schools here in Utah (according to various
rankings). We found our Utah schools to be mediocre at best and a big step down
from our schools back east. The biggest differences in Utah schools from our
prior schools?1. Too many students in each classroom!2. Too
many young and inexperienced teachers (probably due to low pay).3. Too
few resources available for students and teachers (books/workbooks, computers,
musical instruments, library resources, aids, etc.)4. Too low of
expectations for student performance by students, parents and teachers.5.
Too much grade inflation and too much extra credit.6. Complacency about
the need for continual improvement.7. Too much focus on sports and other
extra-curricular activities.8. Not enough focus on STEM subjects, grammar
and literature/reading.We need to get serious about preparing our
young people to be competitive in an intensely competitive global job market and
need to get serious about properly preparing them for life. Additional
resources are clearly needed. But so is a change in our perceptions and