Coalition Calls On Ducey, Legislature To Reinvest In Public Schools With New Revenues

A coalition of 15 organizations, AZ Schools Now, called on the Legislature and Governor Doug Ducey to deliver “sustainable, permanent and equitable investments” in the state’s public schools in 2018 and presented a menu of investment options the Legislature could enact that would generate hundreds of millions of dollars for Arizona’s K-12 public schools.

Dick Foreman, president and CEO of the Arizona Business and Education Coalition, said, “The business, faith and education communities are united in support for real and lasting investments in public schools – now. This investment cannot be satisfied with fund sweeps, future promises or marginal action. We are offering specific suggestions for a meaningful and welcome down payment towards the needs of our public schools and are ready and willing to work with the governor and Legislature to make this happen.”

“The Legislature has within its power the ability to make substantial and permanent investments in our public schools and teachers,” stated Linda Lyon, president of the Arizona School Boards Association Board of Directors and member of the Oracle Elementary School District governing board, “And we expect them to do just that.”

“We’ve waited an entire decade for the Legislature to make our schools whole,” declared Beth Simek, president of the Arizona PTA. “Of the $1.5 billion dollars slashed from public schools during the Great Recession, more than one billion is still missing. That means an entire generation of kids—my kids, your kids, our kids—have had to ‘make do’ with overcrowded classrooms, outdated textbooks and technology, a loss of critical support staff such as reading specialists and guidance counselors, and even a loss of the most basic and vital tool: a classroom teacher.”

“Enough is enough,” said Simek. “Parents are fed up with the excuses and not willing to wait another year for the governor and Legislature to take this funding crisis seriously.”

Alexis Aguirre, a second grade teacher in the Osborn School District and a 2017 CPLC Outstanding Latino Teacher Award winner, noted that teachers are discouraged by what they see at the Legislature.

“Our responsibilities and class sizes are growing while our paychecks remain stagnant,” stated Aguirre. “Receiving a one-percent stipend while others in state government receive double-digit raises doesn’t convince teachers that our lawmakers understand why dedicated and exceptional teachers are fleeing the state. We need real investments in our teachers, and we need them now.”

AZ Schools Now identified 10 revenue sources as potential funding streams the Legislature could tap for sustainable, permanent and equitable new investments in K-12 public schools. Those options include:

9 Comments on "Coalition Calls On Ducey, Legislature To Reinvest In Public Schools With New Revenues"

  1. Throwing more taxpayers’ dollars or any other source of funds at the corrupt and broken education system that exists throughout Arizona is not going to improve the quality of graduates. The entire system needs a major overhaul which would require the firing of thousands of people working in the state educational organization as well as expunging from the curriculum all of the liberal rubbish and the firing of thousands of school districts’ administrators as well as site administrators.

  2. What, Again | January 5, 2018 at 4:22 am |

    Wouldn’t it be easier to just send the K-12 education taxpayer dollars to Mexico instead of dealing with all the greedy liberals in public education?

  3. What, Again | January 5, 2018 at 4:24 am |

    “2017 CPLC Outstanding Latino Teacher Award winner”

    Maybe if he received the Outstanding American Teacher Award he might have more credibility.

  4. American Education System has been broken for too long, and taxpayers are not seeing a positive return on their investment. The reasons why are numerous, but I can simplify with one word, Progressives.

  5. Archie Dicksion | January 5, 2018 at 10:07 am |

    There is no doubt that we have an obligation to provide sufficient funding to educate our students. The question is, what is “sufficient funding”? It does not appear that there is any consensus on how much money per student is required for that education. It also does not appear that there is any consensus on what constitutes that education. Perhaps it is necessary to establish a committee or board who has the duty to answer those two questions before we start talking about the government providing more funds. As an illustration, in many if not all schools districts, high school students can take college preparatory courses. Am not sure that is required to give a student a high school education. We then have to compare that with the fact that when a student graduates high school and enrolls in college 37% ( the last figure I have) of them are required to take highs school courses in college before they can proceed with college courses. That seems basically dysfunctional to me and a waste of taxpayer dollars. I once volunteered and at a library for 7th and 8th graders. In putting books away I noticed a shelf of books that were more attuned to 1st and 2nd graders. When I ask the librarian about them I was advised that there were children in the school that could only read at that level. Where was the help for those students when they were in the 1st and 2nd grades? The State Legislature allocates a specific amount of money in the budget to education. Those funds are then allocated to the various school districts who then decide how those funds are to be spent. there is no uniformity on what the districts pay teachers. We are told that we cannot keep teachers because of low pay. When you check the various school districts you will quickly become aware that the individual districts have a wide discrepancy in pay and benefits. When you compare Arizona pay with say, California and adjust for cost of living differences it becomes apparent that the pay differential is not that great. Again, before we spend money, lets decide how much we need to spend and for what.

  6. The Evil One | January 5, 2018 at 10:43 am |

    “…to take this funding crisis seriously.”
    What funding crisis? TUSD spends $13,300 per Student per year. Like ALL government entities, they don’t have a funding problem, the have a SPENDING problem.

    • Is that a number that TUSD will admit to? Then it’s probably 30-40% higher than that. They have pocketed all of the building maintenance/janitorial/landscape monies and asked the more affluent parents to trim the trees, and take out the trash.

      Can we make a movie called “Government Schools Gone Wild?”

  7. No.

  8. The Oracle of Tucson | January 5, 2018 at 12:10 pm |

    When liberal progressive elitist started infecting public institutions of learning with the goal of promoting liberal tinkling by teaching students what to think at the expense of teaching students how to think, our children got shortchanged.
    No amount of money can fix this problem. The entire ideology needs to be overhauled and replaced with what really works Vs. what libtards would like to work.
    For decades TUSD, has consistently stolen funds away from classrooms cheating children from the best educational opportunities. The selfish hoarding and misappropriation continues with prop. 123 monies. In order to secure the needed votes for passage, Prop. 123 was sold to the public as way to give teachers a raise. It was only after its passage that we’re told that school districts can spend or hoard Prop. 123 funds as they alone see fit.
    Just like Pima county’s invisible and missing misappropriated HURF funds, TUSD is always broke while flushed with cash despite all infusions or never ending tax increases.
    Would you give a pyromaniac matches? Would you give 40yr old whiskey to an alcoholic? Because giving any increases to rogue out of touch and out of control school distracts mimics the same level of insanity.
    Revenue sources will always be outpaced by spending as long as the public keeps writing blank cheeks.

    The Oracle

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