The numbers don't lie. Arizona’s public education system is in crisis.
- Over 2,000 classrooms were without a teacher as the '17-18 school year ended. Another 3,400 were staffed by people who were not appropriately certified educators.
- Class-size in Arizona is among the highest, while teacher salaries are the lowest in America.
- Teachers are relocating away from Arizona to neighboring states to enjoy higher salaries and smaller class sizes.
- Arizona is ranked 48th in per-pupil funding.
Arizona’s crisis is rooted in the bias that current legislators exhibit against our state’s public education system and their reckless mismanagement of taxpayer dollars that expose their favoritism towards private and charter schools.
Most Arizona taxpayers would be outraged if they realized our legislators were supplying nearly $1300 more in per-pupil funding for a public charter school student over a traditional public school student.
The Grand Canyon Institute found that 75% of charter schools use business practices that would be illegal in our traditional public schools! The institute’s findings clearly expose negligent legislative oversight of how charter schools use our taxpayer dollars.
When a charter school fails—and they fail more often than taxpayers hear about—charter founders are not held accountable. In fact, they actually get to keep the land and buildings purchased with Arizona taxpayer money!
Much of Arizona’s tax dollars never make it into the general fund. Current law entitles a married couple to get a $2,000 tax credit for sending a child to a private school but only a $400 tax credit for sending a child to public school. The law is not only unfair—it’s unethical! And if a $1600 inequity weren’t unfair enough, legislators severely restrict the use of public school credit dollars to outside of the classroom.
For too long, Arizona lawmakers have positioned the very small minority of private-school students ahead of the nearly one million public school students. The laws that perpetuate the egregious and divisive misuse of taxpayer dollars must change.
Arizona voters have the power to elect candidates who will end the legislative malpractice!
- Eliminating most private-school tax credits will increase our general fund by nearly $200 million!
- Ending the reckless and irresponsible legislation that funds paying cash for new school construction versus bonding will add another $100 million to public education! (Very few individuals pay cash for newly constructed homes. The legislated misuse of taxpayer dollars makes no fiscal sense.
It is time to fix a broken system.
It is time to elect conscientious individuals who will legislate laws and policies that ensure equitable funding and resources for all children including the one million children attending public schools who have been neglected for too long.
It is time for a teacher.