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In New York More Money for Government Schools = More Mediocrity

Progressives always tell us public education is underfunded and that if we only spend more we would get better results. When is that going to happen?

A case in point: the New York state legislature is now debating tax hikes to pay for calls to spend more on education. The New York State United Teachers Union has launched a “Fund Our Public Schools” campaign demanding that the 2024–25 state budget include $419 million dollars to correct “underfunding.”

The unions inhabit an alternate universe. New York’s K-12 spending tops that of all states and the District of Columbia—fully 85 percent above the national average. The education spending gap between the Empire State and the rest of the country has more than tripled over the past 20 years.

Teacher salaries in New York are the highest in the country. They’ve increased by 73% over the last 20 years and now AVERAGE over $90,000 a year.

What are parents getting for their tax dollars? How’s this for a scandal? No one really knows. When standardized test results were finally released last December, state officials had lowered the definition of “proficiency” thus making it impossible to know how district outcomes have changed.

In addition, New York’s state allows so many students to opt out of testing that a former analyst with the New York City Department of Education, says the state’s tests are “virtually useless” as a gauge of student performance.

So in the state with the highest public school expenditures in the country, there are no cost controls, little transparency, and few ways to know how kids are doing. That’s called a cover-up.

To paraphrase Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men: “You want the truth. You can’t handle the truth.”

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