INVEST IN OUR CHILDREN’S FUTURE
Our children are our single best investment. We can give them the very best opportunities by providing them with the very best education. But we’re failing them.
Our state has a terrible record when it comes to education. For a state with the 27th highest GDP in the Union we rank 38th in per student spending. We are not prioritizing our children’s’ education and it shows. Our state has problems with teacher shortages because a qualified teacher can earn more money bartending in this state than teaching. We need to pay our teachers more.
We have a serious problem with giving our children a less than mediocre education. Year after year our children’s proficiency levels in reading, writing, and math lag behind the national average by a significant margin according to the National Center for Education Statistics. This occurs before fourth grade and only gets worse in subsequent grades. We can tackle this issue through funding pre-k education and after school remedial programs to help students catch up to their peers.
We can also fund STEAM programs to inspire students to learn more and give students from more poorly funded school systems an opportunity to experience STEAM fields.
But how are we going to fund this, Richard?
I’m glad you asked. Beyond shifting around funds in our current budget we can create new revenue streams via a state lottery, and the legalization of gambling and cannabis.