Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Get ready to hear the educrats squeal

Prepare yourself to hear the government bankrolled educrats squeal. A House committee working on the budget shortfall is looking at a 3.3% cut in education funding. That's about $100 million overall.

I can't even begin to imagine what is going to be said after the reaction over a measly 1% cut. It's for the children, don't you know? Yes I know, and if more money equaled better results, I might consider getting on board. But time and time again studies have shown more money doesn't make students perform better or prepare them to enter college or the real world.

To understand that money does not equal performance, one needs to look no further than Kansas City, Missouri. In 1985, a federal judge ordered the district to come up with a plan to close the gap in achievement among white and black students. The catch? Money was to be no object.

A Cato Institute analysis gives us the plan formulation and the dismal results.
To improve the education of black students and encourage desegregation, a federal judge invited the Kansas City, Missouri School District to come up with a cost-is-no-object educational plan and ordered local and state taxpayers to find the money to pay for it.

Kansas City spent as much as $11,700 per pupil--more money per pupil, on a cost of living adjusted basis, than any other of the 280 largest districts in the country. The money bought higher teachers' salaries, 15 new schools, and such amenities as an Olympic-sized swimming pool with an underwater viewing room, television and animation studios, a robotics lab, a 25-acre wildlife sanctuary, a zoo, a model United Nations with simultaneous translation capability, and field trips to Mexico and Senegal. The student-teacher ratio was 12 or 13 to 1, the lowest of any major school district in the country.

The results were dismal. Test scores did not rise; the black-white gap did not diminish; and there was less, not greater, integration.

In fact, more money equals better schools was the mantra of educrats when the Supreme Court ordered more spending in 2005. And yet year after year no reliable evidence has been produced to show that money has a significant effect on student achievement.

Democrats have argued that Kansas should decouple it's tax code from federal tax laws to increase state revenues. Changes to Federal tax laws passed by the Democratically controlled Congress and signed by President Obama have compounded the state's budget problems because currently Kansas follow suit with any new tax breaks. And yet those changes were part of the stimulus package that was supposed to help our economy rebound. So will Kansas Democrats side with Obama or will they once again bow to the Kansas education lobby?


Jason said...

It's wonderful to have the federal government cut taxes- makes no sense to automatically change our state rates just because the fed does.

I mean, goodness- that does seem to be a crazy surrendering of power to the federal government, doesn't it, Republicans?

As to education funding- cuts will hurt school districts. Every single district will handle cuts in a different way and in nearly every district it'll be the kids that get the short end of the stick.

Thank goodness the Republicans are making sure we don't increase taxes on rich people, though! Thank goodness for that...

Anonymous said...

Surrender of power would be if the state couldn't change the law. They can change the law, and whether that should or shouldn't be done is the question.

farmerjoe said...

I don't understand, how are Republican's blocking tax increases on the rich by advocating keeping tax breaks passed by a Democrat Congress and signed by a Democrat President? I thought Democrat's only gave tax breaks to the middle class.