America’s voters will soon decide what direction the country will take over the next four years. For public schools and the people who work in them, the stakes couldn’t be higher. On the Table is looking at the top issues educators are considering as they head to the polls.
Money can’t buy happiness.
But it does buy classroom supplies, textbooks and computers. It provides students with safe, modern learning environments. And it pays the men and women we trust to educate and protect our children when they go to school.
Better funding isn’t the only solution for the challenges our schools face, but it’s a big part of the solution. So when politicians downplay the value of investing in proven reforms like small class sizes, school employees notice, and they react.
On the issue of funding for our schools, Mitt Romney has thrown his support behind the budget developed by Paul Ryan. It’s a budget that would make devastating cuts to education programs, including early childhood education, special education, and Title I funding targeted at low-income students. Those kinds of cuts are in line with the budget priorities Romney had as a governor, when he cut funds for special education, early literacy and even meals for low-income children.
President Obama has increased federal support for education. He signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to save over 400,000 educator jobs. The Education Jobs Fund saved another 150,000 jobs. That’s more than half a million people working in our schools to help children rather than standing in an unemployment line.
The contrast is stark: cuts to successful programs and fewer people to do the important work of educating our children, or investment in our children as an investment in the future.
Where do educators stand on the issue? Just ask. They will tell you.