Education Funding

Concern about public education funding is consistently a top issue in Utah. I believe most Utahns share the view that investing in future generations by improving the quality of education is a priority, but not at the cost of raising taxes. During the 2012 legislative session, many focused on the projected budget surplus as a means of addressing student population growth in education. The problem with this approach is that it doesn’t address the long term sustainability of funding and expanding our education investment over the long haul.

Public education received the lion’s share of additional funding during the 2012 legislative session. Some of the funding items were included because revenue estimates had grown from original projections of approximately $280 million to projections of about $422 million. New spending items in the 2012 budget for Public Education over and above the Public Education base budget include:

  • $41 million for enrollment growth for the 12,500 new students that will start school next year,
  • $5 million for teacher supplies,
  • $7 million for computer adaptive testing,
  • $5 million for small, rural schools,
  • Nearly $22 million in per pupil spending increase,
  • $5 million for online testing,
  • $2.5 million for charter schools,
  • Over $1 million for special education students,
  • $5 million for school buildings

Investing in our future generations by improving the quality of education is a key priority, but this investment must be approached in a manner that is sustainable long-term and without imposing cumbersome burdens on Utah’s taxpayers.

This post was written by
Comments are closed.