By Democrats For Education Reform
It’s no secret that Arizona’s public schools are hurting for state support. Over the past eight years, our schools have suffered some of the deepest cuts of any school systems in the nation. It is with this in mind that Democrats for Education Reform supports Proposition 123, which will be on the May special election ballot.
While we are fully supporting Proposition 123, Democrats for Education Reform wants to be very clear about one thing: Proposition 123 is not the solution to Arizona’s school funding woes, it is only the beginning. We agree with the Senate and House Democrats, as well as educational advocates across the state, in that Arizona needs to have a much larger conversation about both adequately funding and improving our public schools.
Any improvement is a step in the right direction, and we appreciate Governor Ducey’s effort to provide more funding to our schools, but clearly it’s not the ultimate answer to our schools’ funding woes. Even with its passage, we will still need a long-term, permanent solution which will provide substantially more money for improving our educational programs, attracting and retaining quality teachers, and repairing and maintaining critical infrastructure. But with that in mind, Proposition 123 is a start – one which represents an opportunity for new funding for schools for the first time in many, many years in Arizona – and because of that we urge every voter in the state, regardless of political affiliation or ideology, to support it.
Democrats for Education Reform hopes the momentum of a Proposition 123 victory will be the impetus for additional activities immediately following the May special election. Activities which will identify additional funding sources and innovative policies aimed at improving our students’ educational opportunities and outcomes. We believe 2016 could be a turning point for Arizona’s public schools, and we look forward to working with elected leaders, education advocates, education professionals, and parents who share that same vision.
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