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Stripping Funds From Neediest Students

As I write this I am sitting in the House Education Committee Hearing Room waiting to testify against expanding the voucher program.

But, last week, I sat across the courtyard, and testified against stripping Desegregations Funding from Arizona schools. Some of the state’s poorest and most disadvantaged students reside in the districts that receive desegregation funding. These students could fall back into a cycle of failure. Desegregation dollars help some of the neediest students gain access to the same learning opportunities as those in wealthier districts. I acknowledge that our system of funding education is not equitable, buy, this is not the community to attempt to create a savings. If legislators were also proposing a bill to increase monies for students for whom it absolutely costs more money to educate, then I would be more amenable to this bill.

It’s becoming more and more difficult for any district to pass any bond override and potentially this new funding community vote. Because private and charter school tax credits and vouchers diminish the pot from which we obtain school funding, there is less and less funding for the 80% of students who are going to traditional public schools. This will once again drain the funding for these students. This is not fair, not compassionate and no matter how legislators dress up their language it is WRONG.

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