My Photo
Blog powered by Typepad

« Charter schools: the first step toward privatization | Main | Rethinking schools: 'choice' has gottta go! »

February 27, 2006


You suggested the solution, and you are exactly correct.

You say, "In other words, we can't actually do anything until voters are reassured that schools aren't squandering taxpayer money. Didn't Gov. Kulongoski say just that as he began his term as governor?"

Yes, the Governor called for a freeze in compensation for K-12 employees. This suggestion of his didn't come without a knowledge of K-12 funding problems. He identified the precise problem with Oregon K-12 funding. Oregon K-12 employees are among the highest individually compensated in the U.S. At the same time, Oregon is one of the "poorer" states (ranked 36th in per capita income. These two diverse economic forces are direct components to Oregon's funding problems. It is not that Oregon has under spent everyone else. Oregon has funded K-12 better than Washington for more than a decade following Measure 5. Only last year, did Washington per pupil spending, equal Oregon.

Terry, can you provide a reference for "Per student spending in Oregon is nine percent below the national average."?

Reference "the school funding crisis," Bangladesh might have a school funding crisis. Haiti may. Somalia almost certainly does. But Oregon, one of the better off regions of the planet? Perhaps PPS should have planned better for a known termination of the temporary tax. It could have sold more real estate, forged a harder line on contract negotiations, lobbied the legislature to drop the five-year teacher education requirement, and done many other things to prepare for future revenue reality.

It's a sad day when we're reduced to comparing Oregon's educational system with those of Haiti or Bangladesh. But I do agree that PPS' leadership, meaning the board and the superintendent, have not been up to the task of securing adequate funding for the district. That's one of many issues where I've been critical of those in charge.

As to the nine percent figure, that was from Scott Bailey, as I recall. But it sounds about right. In 2003-4, Oregon ranked 28th in per student spending nationally, and it is probably lower now.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Most Recent Photos

  • War_prez_prima_1
  • Bushvaca2nh
  • Dscn1145_2
  • Dscn1144_4
  • Dscn1144_1
  • Dscn1137_3
  • Dscn1137_4
  • Dscn1051
  • Dscn1046
  • Dscn0883_1
  • Dscn0881_1
  • 422d683505eb4821_1