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By Amanda Litvinov
After reading Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, you’ve brushed up on four essential facts about school funding. Now, what can you do with this knowledge? You can share it with your networks, persuade policymakers, and, when necessary, dispute myths when you hear them. Here, in the final post in this series, we offer a few do’s and don’ts for entering into conversations about school funding.
When you’re talking school funding….
- Share how education funding affects your classroom. Personal stories help elected leaders and the public understand that students and educators feel every funding cut.
- Emphasize the return on investing in public education. State leaders should know they’ll have bragging rights for investing in neighborhood public schools.
- Connect the dots: Voucher schemes drain money from public schools. Taxpayers should not be asked to support two separate systems of education, and everyone around you should know it.
- Don’t repeat the opposition’s argument and avoid using their misleading words. Your goal should be to assert the truth and back it up without re-stating the myth. Call a voucher a voucher—not “choice,” a tax credit, or an education savings account.
- Don’t just say what doesn’t work—name the solutions as well. There are many proven ways to improve schools, such as reducing class sizes so that teachers can provide more one-on-one attention, offering a well-rounded curriculum, and increasing parental involvement. That’s how taxpayer funds should be spent.
Educators are among the most trusted members of the community. When you speak up on why public school funding matters, people will listen.