Dr. Rocky Killion, superintendent of the West Lafayette Schools, has an op-ed in the Lafayette Journal & Courier prompted by the House Education Committee’s proposal to raise teacher salaries by diverting money away from other school funding necessities such as custodial, maintenance, secretarial, health, special education and other supports services for students and teachers. Rather than increasing the burden on teachers by diverting money away from those supports, Killion identifies $180 million wasted on school testing mandates and private school vouchers that the General Assembly should eliminate, freeing up money for teacher salaries: $100 million on standardized testing; $10 million on I-READ 3 testing; and $70 million on vouchers.
My favorite line from the column was with respect to I-READ 3, “Teachers do not need this test to determine whether or not a student is reading at a third-grade level. The best, most efficient way to find out if a third-grade student is reading at a third-grade level is by asking a third-grade teacher.” Dr. Killion also points out that 60% of students who are using taxpayer dollars to attend a private/religious school have never attended a public school.
I have a slightly less dignified take on the current proposal:
Teachers: Hey, General Assembly, . . . hey! How about a little something, you know… for the effort, you know?
General Assembly: Oh, uh, there won’t be any money, but when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness.
So, they’ve got that going for them. Which is nice.