Re: [wa-liberals] Hunter and Litzow on funding education, with accountability
- The other shoe has dropped--Litzow's schools accountability bill. Watch for my detailed analysis later today on NPI.
----- Original Message -----
From: Donald Smith <thinkerfeeler@...>
To: WA Liberals <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Sat, 26 Jan 2013 19:40:20 -0000 (UTC)
Subject: [wa-liberals] Hunter and Litzow on funding education, with accountability
On Tuesday, I attended a forum in Issaquah on education funding, organized by the League of Education Voters.
The main speakers were Rep. Ross Hunter — Democratic chair of the
House Ways and Means (budget) Committee — and Republican State Senator
Steve Litzow of the 41st LD.
Ross Hunter (D-48th LD)
Steve Litzow (R-41st LD)
In the McCleary decision last year the State Supreme Court ruled that
the Legislature is underfunding K-12 education, which is the “paramount
duty” of the state according to the State Constitution. Hunter says
that between now and 2018 the state will have to spend an additional
$4.5 billion on education. For 2013-2015, the state should spend about
$1.7 billion more.
In the 2009 bill HB 2261, signed by then Gov. Gregoire, the
Legislature clarified and strengthened the definition of “basic
education”, on the basis of substantial research and debate. That bill
will now have to be funded. One change is that in the future the
state should be paying for many of the services now provided locally by
districts: transportation of students, supplies, operating costs, and
salaries. Currently too much of the funding is provided by local school
districts; this results in higher real estate tax rates needed in
poorer districts. In short, Bellevue should be paying more money to
help students in poor districts. For a primer on Levy Equalization see this link.
In addition, HB 2261 calls for free all-day kindergarten and for
smaller K-3 class sizes. And it calls for more stringent graduation
requirements, including additional credit hours. This will require
longer a school year.
But Litzow emphasized “Our caucus won’t pay 1 penny more into
education” without more accountability that the money is being well
Republicans are not entirely without justification for worrying about
accountable spending. Hunter and Litzow regularly referred to a poster
with the following graph, showing Return on Investment on education
Source: Center for American Progress...
See Report on League of Education Voters forum in Issaquah
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