New plans are coming in from all different angles on how to deal with the problems communities face with funding schools and public education.
With students already feeling new pressures of having to pay for printing, why would we want to stress more students with additional teacher pay cuts, possible larger class sizes, and losing more than just money?
Students should have other things to worry about other than the possibility of not getting a true education.
Both the state House and Senate have passed budget measures that would slash funding for public schools in this state by more than $2.3 billion during the next two years – or more than $2,000 per student.
Another bill was proposed that could slash another $95 million by taking money from schools with a high number of truant students. This bill was rejected because schools would still be responsible for maintaining their facility even if students would continue to be absent from school.
Other bills that are being considered include a plan that would cut a projected $251 million from the education budget by docking teachers’ pay by 3 percent. Gov. Christine Gregoire and a myriad of educational groups have been heatedly criticizing these proposals.
Still, the Senate has proposed $4.8 billion in cuts across the state to make up for the budget’s shortfall. The different houses are still trying to come up with a compromise to take care of the budget’s pitfalls and come up with something that can help all parts.
Locally, Hawkeye alums Maria and Joe DeMiero have helped put together a campaign, 160reasons.org, a place where students and members of the community can go to learn more information about the legislation and how they can make a difference.
Bushra Raza, a junior and ASB secretary and the only student at MTHS who is a the recently appointed student adviser to the school board, stated that, “I sympathize with the lawmakers who have to enforce such laws but they have to realize that $2 billion dollar budget cuts will really affect our students and now’s not the time to abandon us, we are the future they need to invest in me and my peers. What we need on a basic level is a good education to become responsible members of our society.”
Cutting the education budget is not only unintelligent, it is harming the future of Washington state and America, cutting the funds that pay teachers salaries they can live on and pay for programs like music, journalism and robotics. Cutting these programs will drastically reduce the number of students interested in school and activities.
With our world changing in every aspect we need intelligent young people who are willing and eager to make changes.
President Obama recently said, “We lose ourselves when we compromise the very ideals we fight to defend. And we honor those ideals by upholding them not when it’s easy but when it’s hard.”
As Article IX of the Washington state constitution states: “It is the paramount duty of the state to make ample provision for the education of all children residing within its borders, without distinction or preference based on color, caste, or sex.”