Spend more money on traditional schools? We tried that

Opponents of the charter-school amendment on next month’s ballot offer a simple alternative idea: Spend more money.

That’s about all the educational establishment can conjure as a means of improving Georgia’s below-average results. State schools superintendent John Barge got to the point quickly when he came out against the amendment back in August.

Barge estimated the state would spend an extra $430 million on new charter schools over a five-year period. He said the state shouldn’t spend that money until existing schools are fully staffed with fully paid teachers for full school years the lack of which he attributed to state budget cuts averaging almost $1.2 billion in recent years.

So, there you have it, fiscal conservatives wary of the amendment. Barge and his fellow travelers don’t want to spend another $430 million over the next five years. They want to spend an additional $6 billion during those years about 14 times as much.

Whereas charter schools would at least offer a chance to give students and parents different and better options, that $6 billion would go into the same model we’ve had for years. As it happens, we already know what we get when we pour more and more money into that system: Student learning doesn’t grow nearly as quickly as the funding does.

That’s because, complaints about spending notwithstanding, educational spending in Georgia has gone up, up, up over the longer term. But test scores have barely budged by comparison.

Consider a common national benchmark for standardized testing: the National Assessment of Educational Progress, or NAEP. Because the annual data available for budget numbers and state NAEP scores don’t always overlap, I’m making the most long-term comparison I can: 2002 to 2011.

Between 2002 and 2011, state funding per pupil rose by 10 percent.

Reading scores for Georgia fourth-graders and eighth-graders during those years rose by just 2.8 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively.

Math scores for Georgia fourth-graders rose by 3.5 percent, eighth-graders by 3 percent. (The math scores actually come from 2003, but per-pupil funding then was within $2 of its level in 2002, so it’s a very similar comparison.)

As I reported in a recent column, state-chartered schools the ones that stand to grow if the amendment passes — already outperform their local, traditional counterparts by about 12 percent.

Perhaps the extra money didn’t yield commensurate results because it didn’t always go into classrooms, according to the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice.

In a report to be released this week, the foundation found the number of teachers in Georgia grew about twice as fast as the number of students over the past two decades. But so did the number of non-instructional staff (e.g., administrators and secretaries).

Had the growth in non-instructional staff merely kept pace with that of students, Georgia would have employed about 23,000 fewer people in 2008, the most recent year the foundation studied. Using a conservative estimate of $40,000 per year for each of them, these extra workers cost Georgia about $925 million that year.

And how much do Barge & Co. think Georgia schools need each year? Right: $1.2 billion. That $925 million alone would cover three-quarters of the tab.

But if our educational dollars aren’t well-spent now, why would we give them more? And why wouldn’t we embrace an amendment that offers a better way?

– By Kyle Wingfield

243 comments Add your comment

Whatever

October 19th, 2012
6:09 pm

I’m a con and I say no. If I want a charter school ill vote in a LOCAL board to do it.

Finn McCool (The System isn't Broken; It's Fixed)

October 19th, 2012
6:14 pm

Kyle still asking taxpayers to pay for his kid’s private, exclusionary school?

I Report (-: You Whine )-: mmm, mmmm, mmmmm! Just sayin...

October 19th, 2012
6:14 pm

And here I thought it would be impossible to spend more money on traditional schools.

What are they doing with what we’ve given them already, piling it up in some room?

They sure aren’t educating the kids with it, just sayin…

Increased circulation

October 19th, 2012
6:15 pm

“Fellow traverlers” – are pulling your rhetoric from the House on UnAmerican Committee or a 1953 movie? Better hurry along now, Kyle, you don’t want to be late for your John Birch meeting.

LeRoi2

October 19th, 2012
6:17 pm

I do not understand why a person of at least average intelligence would oppose charter schools. It is the only work around available to the established teachers unions to focus a school on their primary objective, educating students. The real solutions long term remain: ending tenure for teachers; a voucher system allowing parents to move their children to schools that have better results; being able to quickly retrain or replace teachers that are incapable of teaching.

Charter schools are all we have until that day comes, and I dont see it happening any time soon.

Olde Tyme Teacher

October 19th, 2012
6:19 pm

Kyle, the teachers want to know, what do you (or everyone else) want? We all work VERY hard. The rules keep changing. We do one thing, and some other group tells us to do something else instead. Another group says _________, then another group says _________. On and on. Teachers did not hire all of the non-instructional people you mention. Government of one form or another REQUIRES most of the work these people do. We are tired of being in the middle of politics. Truth be told, if we improved 1000%, no one would notice, or they would say what about _______?

mike

October 19th, 2012
6:23 pm

I want my property tax dollars spent on our Christian school. If that makes your property taxes go up well, then that’s too bad.

If you want to send your kids to a private Christian school, don’t expect the rest of us to subsidize it!

LeRoi2

October 19th, 2012
6:25 pm

My daughter is a HS teacher. She started teaching after a few years in the business world, and tired of the long hours and the competitiveness. She says it is a cake walk. Easiest job she could imagine. She teaches 5 classes a day of about 40 students, with an assistant. She puts in 40 hours a week, and never has to go over. She loves all of the time off, and the stress free atmosphere.

What she dislikes the most is all of the long time teachers doing nothing but complaining how hard their jobs are, how many hours they work, how parents dont help, etc. She says most of these teachers have been around over 20 years, have never had a job other than teaching, make $85K per year for a 10 month year, and have no idea what a real job entails. They also make no effort to teach, believing that they are already under paid just for showing up.

We need to get these kinds of burnout cases out of the schools. End tenure, hold teachers accountable for how much the students learn in their classes.

Skip

October 19th, 2012
6:25 pm

Could be you have a lot of dumb kids here, ever think of that?

mike

October 19th, 2012
6:27 pm

Well, I Report, I see you didn’t get the standard 1 week suspension for calling a blogger by other than their log in name. I guess Kyle has softened his punishment policies. Or, at least for his right wing bloggers.

teacher&mom

October 19th, 2012
6:43 pm

Someone from the DOE should send Kyle a copy of the power point Dr. Barge presented at the recent Bootstrap conference.

Kyle may be shocked to learn that GA has actually shown improvement in several areas….ACT, NAEP, SAT, and AP scores.

mike

October 19th, 2012
6:56 pm

By now it’s obvious to almost everyone that America suffers from “Bushnesia.” “Bushnesia” is an affliction that affects the right wing in America wherein they can’t remember the abject debacle that was the Bush presidency. They can’t remember the wars, the absurd tax cuts, the outsourcing, the fraud, the waste, the housing bubble, the ridiculous policies, the economic policies that landed us in the hole that is seemingly impossible to dig out from under.

And now we suffer from “Romnesia” where we can’t remember what Romney yesterday, let alone last week. What does he stand for? What are his policies? What are the specifics of his “tax plan.” How does he plan to “turn the country around?”

Silly me, I forgot about the “magic wand.” Yeah, that’s it, the magic wand.

Under the bus

October 19th, 2012
6:57 pm

Kyle, what’s wrong with the way charter schools are approved now? Why does there need to be an additional process since we already have a process in place? Why does their funding formula send more money per student that traditional public and local charter schools? That is where the 430 million dollars comes into play. Barge is simply stating that it’s wrong to start up a separate school system when you have not fully funded the one you have. School systems are not against charter schools, they are against creating another entity that will only do what we are already doing. Start funding schools so they can have 180 days a year and local systems an open their own local charter schools. And why are you in favor of a group of politicians being told by the Supremes that what they are doing is unconstitutional so they say no problem, we’ll just amend that little problem? Why should state elected officials get to tell locally elected officals how to run what we elected them to run? What do you have against secretaries? Believe me, schools get a lot of work done for low wages from secretaries. Did you know that the labor department requires schools to issue work permits? A secretary has to do that. Did you know that the DMV makes students bring in notarized attendance forms to get learner’s/driver’s licence. A secretary has to do that, in addition to answering the phone, greeting the public, typing letters, dispensing mediciine, be support staff for all the teachers and the principal, etc.

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

October 19th, 2012
6:58 pm

Same ole answer from Libs spend more money, just like we have done with Poverty since 1965, and haven’t moved the needle yet. We need to support this amendment, there are BOE all over Georgia that are so turf protecting that they deny applications to start Charters. The sad thing is that everyone can’t go to a Charter, but we have to start somewhere, the traditional schools have been failing us for years.

RAMZAD

October 19th, 2012
7:02 pm

Once every three blue moons I agree with Kyle, since I am profound liberal. This is one of those moons.

Never have I seen a more basic and meritorious idea suffered more demagoguery and fanatical fear-mongering than the Amendment 1.

Local control has failed. Stevie Wonder can see that. The school boards are invariably little more than popularity cesspools operated by temper tantrum junkies steeped in accreditation paranoia,
and money sucking vulturism.

The schools are primarily training warehouses for prison life, baby momma drama, baby daddy irresponsibility, and gangland operations practicum.

If another country worked against our national security like our public schools, local school boards and local control do we would have already used cluster bombs and cruise missiles against them them. Yet, we continue to hear all this irrelevant nonsense about State control and $430,000,000.

I am still trying to figure it out. Somewhere in there it is coming to me that Georgians may be congenitally stupid.

td

October 19th, 2012
7:03 pm

I am a conservative and will vote no for the following reasons:

1: If the local community thinks there should be a Charter school in their system then they can approve one. If they do not think the application for the school makes sense to them then I do not want a non elected commission not accountable to the local community to override their decision.

2: The whole concept of Charter schools is a way out of doing the hard work of real reform of the entire education system. If the few caring parents of a community gets their Charter school and is happy then they will care less about the other schools and if they are failing then you lose are much larger % then you save.

Li'l Aynie

October 19th, 2012
7:07 pm

Kyle, you’re right this time. Spending more money on public education won’t improve the education of American children. Charter schools won’t either.

The basic problem is that we’re trying to make students more alert, aware, and intelligent than their parents. The lessons of school during the day are dispelled in the evening by the behavior of the parents and guardians. It’s a helluva job to raise children to be better than their adult family members.

Second, there is a problem that we can solve: there is no established, predictable curriculum for teachers to teach, students to learn, and developers to build teaching and learning tools.

The hundreds of school boards across the country do not have the funding and wisdom to develop curricula. The federal government should divert the funding of locally-administered schools to contract for the development of model curricula and techniques. The government can demonstrate the new curricula and teaching techniques in the schools for the children of military personnel . The local school boards could either adopt the standard curricula or incur the wrath of concerned parents and endure the criticism of the media.

It’s not necessary to hold up Finland and Korea as examples of good education. There are plenty of superb American schools, but you’ll find them in European and Asian capitals. These foreign “American schools” serve the children of diplomats and businessmen living abroad.

If I were you, Kyle, I’d move back to Brussels to obtain a good education for your kids, not to mention the great food and cultural entertainment for adults, and the freedom from excessive commercialization! Charter school, public school: just bad education!

LeRoi2

October 19th, 2012
7:09 pm

Mike, maybe you forgot, but a president cannot take us to war, it takes an act of congress, which is what Bush got with a majority of the DEMS voting in favor. The “absurd” tax cuts actually INCREASED revenue, which was the largest revenue ever collected by treasury before or since. All of the outsourcing began because of NAFTA, which was passed by a DEM congress, and signed into law by a DEM President Clinton. Fraud and waste have always been a part of Federal spending, which is why REPS are in favor of reducing the Federal budget, not increase it as the DEMS always do.

The housing bubble started with the passing of the Community Redevelopment Act, which was a DEM program signed int law by DEM President Clinton, and overseen by Barney Frank, the DEM in charge of the House Banking Committee. The whole economy that Obama inherited was largely the creation of DEMS, not REPS. The Congress was controlled after 2006 by DEMS, who started the spending spree under Reid and Pelosi 2 years before Bush left, and once Obama got in they really kicked it into high gear.

It is impossible to dig out of a hole by doubling down on the policies that got us in the hole in the first place, which is what Obama has done. Take a look at every state that is controlled by the DEMS, they are all economic basket cases because of DEMS fiscal policies. NY, IL, CA, NJ, WI. It was only after the DEMS were thrown out of NJ, and OH, and WI, that the economies are turning around, and their is job growth again. None of this is hard to figure out if you deal in facts, and reality, instead of believing DEM talking points.

RAMZAD

October 19th, 2012
7:32 pm

People are talking about local control this and local control that but I would like to get some answers:

How about explaining how Clayton County to lose its accreditation in 2008 and DeKalb under interrogation about theirs now- under local control?

How about explaining how APS could become the author and finisher of the greatest public school cheating scandal in the history of the United States- under local control?

How about explaining how the US in 18 in the world in science and mathematics below countries that are in some respect virtual war zones- under local control?

How about explaining why colleges and universities have to do advanced remediation budgets to ready students coming from under “local control?

How about explaining how Crawford Lewis and Pat Pope could misappropriate almost $10,000,000 out of DeKalb education school construction budget- under local control?

How about explaining how only rich neighborhoods have good public schools- under local control?

How about explaining how we can have multiple cases of bullying, mob beatings, sexual assaults, mass shootings in public schools- under local control?

How about explaining what we are getting for the $6,200/year Georgia is spending on each and ever public school student- under local control?

How about explaining why bad teachers are impregnably wedged into the school system and can’t be fired- under local control?

How about explaining how the Georgia State Patrol can give us a speeding ticket on I20 but Georgia can’t charter a public school in Chamblee- under local control?

How about explaining why Georgia can collect local income tax but can’t charter a local school?

Zaquisha

October 19th, 2012
7:33 pm

“They want to spend an additional $6 billion during those years…”

Throwing more money at public education in Georgia wouldn’t move the needle by much. At this point the only way public schools can meaningfully raise test scores is by cheating, and we know how that worked out for Atlanta.

If having charter schools means that some kids will get a better education and become productive, law abiding, non-mooching citizens I am all for it.

Kyle Wingfield

October 19th, 2012
7:41 pm

Olde Tyme @ 6:19: Actually, I sympathize with what you wrote. And that’s one reason I think teachers should be in favor of expanding charter schools — because in most cases (I won’t say “all,” lest someone find an exception of which I’m unaware) they’re free of the kinds of rules you’re talking about, as long as they produce good results.

Some teachers view state-chartered schools as competition. If I were a teacher, I think I’d view them as new job opportunities.

Numbers-R-US

October 19th, 2012
7:41 pm

I have an idea. Let’s give the state responsibility for creating for-profit taxpayer funded private schools that have no oversight because that’s sure to do one thing. Too bad it has nothing to do with education.

Kyle Wingfield

October 19th, 2012
7:43 pm

teache&mom @ 6:43: And in my column, I acknowledge some gains in NAEP…just not very rapid ones. At this rate, it’ll take a decade or two more for Georgia to catch up with the national averages on the various NAEP tests.

Kyle Wingfield

October 19th, 2012
7:45 pm

Under the bus @ 6:57: See what I wrote here about the 2011 court ruling and why it threatens “the way charter schools are approved now” at the state level.

As for the “amend that little problem” part: That’s what the amendment process is for. This is the constitutional way to go about making these kinds of changes.

Kyle Wingfield

October 19th, 2012
7:47 pm

Finn: Not sure why your post got held up. I pushed it through.

Hillbilly D

October 19th, 2012
7:50 pm

If I want a charter school ill vote in a LOCAL board to do it.

I go along with that. I also don’t think spending more money is the answer. We need to be spending the money that we do spend, more wisely. I’d start by trimming the administrative and putting the savings in the classroom.

The main thing missing, in my opinion, is discipline, and that’s not a matter of $$, it’s a matter of mindset.

ODD OWL

October 19th, 2012
7:53 pm

Kyle, you’re being intellectually dishonest… Republicans have been cutting money from public school budgets at the national level and the state level since 1981, when Reagan cut the school budget to the bone… Reagan and his cohorts even labeled ketchup a vegetable in their deep cuts in the school lunch program… Ketchup is still considered a vegetable in the school lunch program today… Now the schools in the rich, elite districts have seen their funding triple in the last 30 years… The public school system should be funded from the general treasury at both the state and federal levels… All the problems this country have today begin with Reagan…

Hillbilly D

October 19th, 2012
7:59 pm

All the problems this country have today begin with Reagan…

We started bleeding blue collar jobs in the 1970’s, as I remember.

Numbers-R-US

October 19th, 2012
8:04 pm

When you motivate students to pursue the money such as in professional sports or modeling or even Wall Street, etc., then you should not be alarmed to see students pursue those careers over something like the highly esteemed climate scientist’s career, etc. After all, a good Youtube video or an IPad app or even a lottery ticket offer so much more opportunity than an education that is designed to simply leave you more indebted. By the way, how much more indebted will parents be once they are given all these for-profit k-12 choices to prepare them for more for-profit higher education choices. And how much more educated will they be afterward. Will they be able to calculate their own loan payments. Anything for a buck though. It’s the Amurican way and k-12 education is ripe for the plucking, I mean, picking. Tell us more, Kyle. When will Murdoch start pumping the Fox Education Channel into the schools for a tidy profit…

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

October 19th, 2012
8:05 pm

Ramzad, I can’t believe it, but we are on the same side. Excellent post at 7:32.

Hillbilly, you are correct, unless we solve the discipline problem, any money spent is wasted on public schools. That is one of the great things about the Charters, if they don’t behave, they leave. They have to go through some effort to get in, and their parents have to go through effort to keep them in, so that greatly influences behavior. Public schools no effort needed, in fact, compelled to go, so outcome is often poor. As the saying goes, you usually get out of something just about what you put into it.

RAMZAD

October 19th, 2012
8:11 pm

Rafe, thanks!

Numbers-R-US

October 19th, 2012
8:13 pm

“When it comes to K-through-12 education, we see a $500 billion sector in the U.S. alone that is waiting desperately to be transformed.” Rupert Murdoch

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

October 19th, 2012
8:17 pm

All the problems this country have today begin with Reagan…

Well, that is your opinion Odd one, I would say they began with FDR, the author of the Gimme state solutions.

Bruno

October 19th, 2012
8:19 pm

We started bleeding blue collar jobs in the 1970’s, as I remember.

Yet tens of thousands of factory jobs remain unfilled today due to lack of qualified applicants. Seems that no one wants to do the dirty work anymore.

Bruno

October 19th, 2012
8:20 pm

Thulsa Doom–Looking for your picks for tomorrow.

How about you, HD?? Any college football picks??

Olde Tyme Teacher

October 19th, 2012
8:23 pm

Kyle, I teach at a charter school. I am still waiting for the relief from federal and state mandates. I lived through the “new” high school math curriculum. I am currently working with the Common Core math curriculum. It won’t work, either, so I am so happy that I will be retired before the replacement for Common Core rolls out in a few years. Again, where is the break on the rules for being a charter school? We still test for, like, 25 days every year. We still have EOCT’s, and we will soon have PARCC assessments. Goodness knows, we got all the budget cuts everyone else got. Soon, we will have to shelve our excellent, locally developed, teacher evaluation instrument in favor of the state RTTT model. Where is that break from the rules for being a charter school you are talking about?

Please do not assume that I, a lowly teacher, am not politically connected enough to know what is going on. Exactly why should I trust legislation calling for a constitutional amendment obviously worded in a loaded manner? Why should I trust legislation whose proponents have accepted thousands of $ from outside the state to promote? Why should anyone outside of Georgia care, anyway?

For the record, I am VERY conservative. I used to be a card-carrying member of the Republican party, before I saw all of the power-grabbing and probable corruption on the part of those we elected to make a difference. I have 34 years in as a teacher and administrator. I am currently teaching, and I am one of those that almost all the parents want to teach their kids. I have always been very popular with students and their parents because I am very knowledgeable and demanding.

…And, several like-minded people and I are seriously considering opening a charter school of our own.

Del

October 19th, 2012
8:25 pm

I voted yes.

Olde Tyme Teacher

October 19th, 2012
8:27 pm

@Rafe-If that were only true……Read what the proponents of the amendment are saying. They say that charter schools have to accept all applicants, and they will not throw out those that do not cooperate. This has been said multiple times on the Get Schooled Blog. Being a teacher at a charter school, I am still waiting for the unmotivated and disruptive to go. All potential expulsions are looked at with increasing scrutiny.

Remember that EVERYONE in the discussion says that charter schools are PUBLIC schools.

Del

October 19th, 2012
8:30 pm

It’s always amusing to see those who claim no party affiliation and then proceed to shoot down conservative values. Get serious folks there’s no middle these days you’re either left wing and that equals Democrat or you’re right wing and that equals Republican.

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

October 19th, 2012
8:31 pm

OTTeacher

I sympathize with what you are facing. My family is full of teachers who voice the same complaints. Question, if you have a choice for your child, which way would you go, traditional or charter? Which do you prefer to teach at? Which offers the most education for the dollar spent?

You answers to those questions would enlighten some, who don’t see the need for the Charters.

Rafe Hollister, suffering through Oblamer's ineptocracy

October 19th, 2012
8:36 pm

OTTeacher

The charter I am familiar with is rural. It takes effort to get your children there. Parents pay for their children to ride a bus, not provided by local school board, but by the Charter. Parents are required to volunteer a specific amount of time in the school. Applications are required to enter, although they do not discriminate, the application process eliminates many slackers. They require a dress code, which itself eliminates problems. Out of pocket costs are higher for parents.

All of these things and what I have heard of this school led me to feel that many of the less motivated were excluded, most voluntarily.

td

October 19th, 2012
8:39 pm

Discipline is only part of the problem in our school system and is really one of the reults of the real problem. The real problem is parents and how parents prioritize the education of their children and how they prioritize the role they play in the maturation process. When a parent does not set education as the first and only priority of a child and follow through with the priority set then that child will not be as willing to learn and may become that discipline problem in the classroom.

Kara Willis was the Libertarian candidate in 2010 for the State school Superintendent’s position. I was at a debate (forum) with her and Dr. Barge and the Dem candidate. One of the questions asked her from a member of the audience was what would she do to bridge the achievement gap in this state. Her answer was (paraphrase) We can change the curriculum to the best in the world with the hardest standards, reduce the class size even more and double our budget and you will only see marginal gains in achievement unless you change the attitudes of the parents in our urban and rural communities that education should be the first and only priority in raising a child.

I voted for Dr Barge but what she said was IMHO 100% correct.

Hillbilly D

October 19th, 2012
8:42 pm

Bruno

Don’t really follow college football.

td

I agree with you that most of the school problems start in the home but how can we fix that? Honestly, I ain’t got a clue. You can’t force people to give a damn.

ODD OWL

October 19th, 2012
8:46 pm

Lets examine who’s being criticised in the school system… The students are blamed, the parents are blamed, the teachers are blamed… Now lets examine the people who are doing all the scape goating and blaming… They are the Republicans, the very same idiots who are cutting the school budgets… The Republicans scape goat and blame the students, the Parents and the teachers in an attempt to justify their massive cuts in spending on schools… The Republicans have become a problem in America… If We the People vote the Republicans out of office, we can get rid of the problem…

Del

October 19th, 2012
8:49 pm

Where I’m fortunate enough to live children get an outstanding education in the public school system. The teachers are outstanding. Unfortunately, that’s not true everywhere. It seems like weekly we read or see on television public school teachers behaving in a manner that’s not contributory to a quality education for our children state wide or nationally. We have to change direction if we’re to survive in the first world of nations. Political correctness must go.

td

October 19th, 2012
8:54 pm

ODD OWL

October 19th, 2012
8:46 pm

” the very same idiots who are cutting the school budgets…”

How does money solve the problem? We spend more money in the US per pupil then any other country in the world but do we have the brightest children in the world?

How much of a reduction in poverty have we had over the past 50 years of the “Great society”? Are there less people poor now then in the early 1960’s?

Del

October 19th, 2012
8:54 pm

The left has been a drag on this country far too long. Citizens who believe in America must silence this scum and prevent them from ruining this Republic any further.

teacher&mom

October 19th, 2012
8:59 pm

@Kyle: It is incredibly naive to believe we are suddenly going to make incredible gains in NAEP, SAT, and/or ACT scores within a short time span.

Rapid gains are not always TRUE gains….just ask some of the districts that are now under the microscope lens for their “miraculous” test score gains.

True growth in education is steady, consistent, and rarely happens is a short time frame…which makes it very vulnerable to those who want to twist the data to meet their immediate needs.

Did you know GA ranked 7th in the 2011 Education Weeks “Quality Counts” report?

GA also ranks 13th in the nation for students scoring a 3 or above on AP exams.

We rank 2nd in the nation for the number of African American students scoring a 3 or above on AP exams.

We are one of 23 states showing improved SAT scores.

Georgia is one of only eleven states showing improvement on SAT and ACT tests.

It’s not all doom and gloom….and yes, it does take money to educate a large number of students.

Dave

October 19th, 2012
9:02 pm

Kyle, I see you are back with the “fellow travelers” aspersions. Why is it necessary to try to connect the state’s school superintendent to communists from the 50’s? Bad form.

As to the merits of you spend less money argument, how about spend whatever amount of money on one system of public education with one set of administrators with a set of standards that are enforced? I don’t much care if those standards are set at the county level or the state level. What I do care about is that the standards make academic not necessarily political sense; and, more importantly, that they are enforced. If a school or a school district or bunches of them don’t cut the mustard, get rid of the people that are failing.

The Amendment does nothing to improve education in Georgia. It just adds an alternate path with different folks in control. What is there about two paths that inherently leads to better results? Nothing.

We need some people that know what they are doing, give them the authority to do it and fire them and move on if they screw up.

teacher&mom

October 19th, 2012
9:03 pm

@Kyle: “Between 2002 and 2011, state funding per pupil rose by 10 percent.”

True…but if you are going to throw that number around, you should also mention the rapid increase in student enrollment.

Look up the percentage of student enrollment increases and publish those numbers alongside the increase in funding.

You may find the actual cost per pupil decreased.