|New Study Links District Spending to Productivity|
|posted by: Alana | July 15, 2014, 10:17 PM|
A new study from the Center for American Progress has been released evaluating the productivity of our nation's schools as it pertains to per-pupil spending.
According to the data taken from 7,000 districts across 40 states, many of our failing schools aren't spending money wisely – both in impoverished and affluent districts alike. The study dispels the theory that more money equals better results.
Whether funds are wasted on lavish athletic programs or excessively high administrator salaries, these districts almost all have one glaring thing in common – they're not talking about how to fix the 400 pound gorilla in the room.
The fact remains that lower income schools are more than twice as likely to be trapped in the least productive school districts. And of those, African-American students are eight times more likely to be enrolled in the least productive districts.
While using education funds wisely is a heavily debated issue, empowering teachers to take on greater roles in the process is critical. Teachers deserve a stronger voice in what programs are most deserving of funding in their districts. Educators often complain funds aren't getting to their classrooms; productivity can be enhanced with teachers in the driver's seat.
According to AAE's Colorado state chapter the Professional Association of Colorado Educators (PACE), a whopping 77% of teachers agree with a policy that would require the deposit of a percentage of per-pupil funding into a classroom account to be used by a teacher on the classroom level.
Melissa Nicklas, a teacher in Colorado Springs, commented, "Teachers often spend their own money for their classroom and it can be disheartening to be told time and time again that the school doesn't have money for the basic necessities to do class projects. More money needs to make it down to the class level."
AAE prides itself in facilitating an open dialogue between our member teachers, education reformers, policy makers and the public to promote more autonomy in American education. We know teachers have invaluable feedback to add to the policy conversation.
What do you think about CAP's findings?