A Lack of Ample School Funding Will Also Lead to a Lack of Equity

Comments

1
State income tax permanently designated to support K-12 education.
2
@1 I have previously proposed exactly that: an Education Income Tax.
3
Or we could just kill all the exemptions. Same thing.

Dollars don't care where they come from.
4
“Legislature Determines That Access to Highly Capable Basic Education Must Continue to Depend on Your Zip Code”

That might as well be the headline. Today, 40% of districts offer no programs or services for their most advanced learners. Not surprisingly, inequalities in access and programming disproportionately affect small and rural districts, minorities, and poor students. The Legislature has done nothing to remedy the situation for the future.

There is no other part of Basic Education that is being told that to ensure proper funding, parents must go to their local school boards and ask for it.

Relying on local school districts to decide whether or how to fund a portion of basic education is neither fair nor equitable. Today’s state funding level - 2.314% of en- rollment, unchanged since 2007- is demonstrably inadequate, leaving 40% of districts with zilch. Access to highly capable programming should not depend on your zip code.
5
@4 Agreed. But if voters in these districts refuse to let the state raise the revenue necessary to fund these services, why should the rest of us allow our schools to be dragged down with them?
6
@5 We're on the same page about raising revenue to provide ample funding. But we can't punish another generation of kids because their parents vote for assholes and/or Eyman initiatives.
7

Washington has only 2 legs of the Texas stool, so it cannot stand.

In Texas, there is no income tax. Sales tax is 4.5%. But property tax is 2%!

This fair and equitable property tax funds a robust social floor for all.

Washington has no income tax, a whopping 10% sales tax, and property tax limited to 1% increases, averaging about three fourths of a percent.

That inability to fairly value and tax property leads to grossly unfair high costs for housing, and egregious inequities in ownership. Where large landowners, even in the suburbs, pay a pittance and force costs onto new residents living in high priced "air condos" with no land and a high mortgage.

Washington is unfair.
Texas is fair.

Texas generates middle class wealth.
Washington is a retirement home for billionaires.
8
I have a first-generation perspective on this. I attended rural schools that were badly underfunded. My first involvement in politics was a campaign to raise property taxes to save our high school from losing accreditation. Good lord, that was a tough fight, but we won. So I'm skeptical when Goldy threatens to throw rural kids under the bus.

Now I'm in a position where I care about property taxes. You know what though? I'm fortunate in that regard, and I want to help other kids climb the ladder behind me. Even those rural kids with Republican parents -- hell they need it more than most. I'm not going to go along with a policy that only helps Seattle kids. Raise my taxes, but don't screw the kids unlucky enough to have Republican parents.
9
This pretends that money is the fundamental problem with our education system. Finland and Japan and Germany and New Zealand and the Netherlands (and many more) spend less per pupil than Washington does (usually with higher teacher pay).

And even if you do tax folks more to spend more on education, the fact is that most of the kids are going to hate the most of the experience and learn a fraction of what they could have learned. It's as sensible as pretending the war on drugs could work if only we gave it more money.

If you want to make sure that every kid gets the very best opportunities for less than what we're spending now, you have change the very experience of what school is.

Saying, "Well, that's too radical, but in the meantime let's just tax people more and spend more on a system that fails millions of kids, regardless of income," is just throwing good money after bad.