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Things That Are Bothering You, Got You All Hibbeldy-Jibbeldy, or just downright pissed, RIGHT NOW!

SixOhNine

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That's also why I think a statewide funding regime for education makes the most sense. Every school should have equal per-pupil funding.
The problem with that is, as always, is implementation. Texas has statewide funding for schools that is pooled from local property taxes. The ongoing fight is that it's a Robin Hood system; it "robs" from the rich and gives to the poor. I live in a small district with high property values, so under the state formula, we actually send more tax money out of the district than we retain. It sucks, but the local school foundation makes up for it with fundraising that frankly astonishes me. Perhaps a better example of the system's failings is Houston, which is also a "rich" school district. Due to the very valuable downtown property, it also collects more in taxes than the state says Houston schools deserve. This is despite being so awful that the state engineered a takeover of the district's administration...

How to fix it all is a billion dollar question the Legislature hasn't figured out in the 30 years or so the system has existed. Our sh!tstain of a governor has been paid to push vouchers and "school choice", but since that's literally never worked anywhere, ever, I suspect it won't lead to better overall education here.
 

VaderDave

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The problem with that is, as always, is implementation. Texas has statewide funding for schools that is pooled from local property taxes. The ongoing fight is that it's a Robin Hood system; it "robs" from the rich and gives to the poor. I live in a small district with high property values, so under the state formula, we actually send more tax money out of the district than we retain. It sucks, but the local school foundation makes up for it with fundraising that frankly astonishes me. Perhaps a better example of the system's failings is Houston, which is also a "rich" school district. Due to the very valuable downtown property, it also collects more in taxes than the state says Houston schools deserve. This is despite being so awful that the state engineered a takeover of the district's administration...

How to fix it all is a billion dollar question the Legislature hasn't figured out in the 30 years or so the system has existed. Our sh!tstain of a governor has been paid to push vouchers and "school choice", but since that's literally never worked anywhere, ever, I suspect it won't lead to better overall education here.
The challenge is that every taxation system (except sales tax, I guess?) tends to take from some people and give to others. It's only because we've gotten used to the idea of local property taxes staying local that we think of a reallocation as "robbing" higher-income districts.

TBH, for me the biggest problem is that I don't have any faith in our government to properly use our tax dollars, at any level.
 

cross22

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I haven't done a huge amount of research on this, but I think in general good students make good schools not vice versa. It's probably the case that if a school's achievement is extremely subpar, additional funding might marginally improve performance but for most part high performing students will perform well regardless of what school they go to. And those students come from backgrounds that encourage or demand studying and achieving. Also at the highest level, both in primary school and college, those students perform exceptionally well in spite of, not because of, the schools they go to.

:nest:
 

VaderDave

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I haven't done a huge amount of research on this, but I think in general good students make good schools not vice versa. It's probably the case that if a school's achievement is extremely subpar, additional funding might marginally improve performance but for most part high performing students will perform well regardless of what school they go to. And those students come from backgrounds that encourage or demand studying and achieving. Also at the highest level, both in primary school and college, those students perform exceptionally well in spite of, not because of, the schools they go to.

:nest:
I agree with this, but I am generally a little more concerned with the average student than the high performing ones. I think (and I'm happy to be shown I'm wrong) that making more resources available at lower performing schools will help average students achieve better outcomes than they would otherwise. If we really think of education as a public good, we ought to focus on making sure there are decent educational opportunities for all students (to the degree possible) instead of focusing just on the top tier students.
 

Piobaire

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I have no hound in this hunt, having been given a shytty family growing up and not having kids of my own, but it seems to me the #1 predictive variable is the parents of the child based on my reading. If they provide a stable home and foster the value of education, the child is likely to excel relative to peers.

Not sure how you fix shytty parents.
 

brokencycle

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I haven't done a huge amount of research on this, but I think in general good students make good schools not vice versa. It's probably the case that if a school's achievement is extremely subpar, additional funding might marginally improve performance but for most part high performing students will perform well regardless of what school they go to. And those students come from backgrounds that encourage or demand studying and achieving. Also at the highest level, both in primary school and college, those students perform exceptionally well in spite of, not because of, the schools they go to.

:nest:

The best performing school systems in the world do not spend the most money. The US is #5 in spending. Korea is the only top performing school system that spends near the top. There is clearly other, more important variables.

Hidden Potential by Adam Grant covers Finland's education system. which shot up to #1 in PISA scores in the early 2000s and continues to be a top 5 country. What's their secret? Keeping teachers with students through primary school. For those interested, here's a NYT article he wrote covering that part of the book: https://archive.ph/aPBU4

Unfortunately none of these facts matter. We have one side that has a single answer: throw more money at the problem, and the other side's answer is: cut taxes and pool all spending on the top 10% of the population.



US News rankings for best public education systems ($k/pupil):
1. Sweden ($13.8)
2. Finland ($12.0)
3. Denmark ($13.2)
4. Germany ($13.7)
5. Canada ($12.8)
...
16. US ($15.5)

World Population Review Rankings
1. Korea ($15.9)
2. Denmark ($13.2)
3. Netherlands ($13.6)
4. Belgium ($14.4)
5. Slovenia ($10.0)
...
31. US ($15.5)

 

RedLantern

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From an insider's perspective at a somewhat rough middle school, many of the problems of my school could not be solved with any amount of money, at least at the school level. The really frustrating part is that the few problems that can be solved with money we refuse to spend on, and the ones that can't we throw good money after bad at.
 

sugarbutch

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From an insider's perspective at a somewhat rough middle school, many of the problems of my school could not be solved with any amount of money, at least at the school level. The really frustrating part is that the few problems that can be solved with money we refuse to spend on, and the ones that can't we throw good money after bad at.
Schools can't overcome the broader issues which affect the families of the children, but in addition to educating children, we seem to have decided that the school is the locus of delivery for all of the social services which aren't being provided elsewhere. One K-8 here even acted as a shelter for a time.

Money certainly won't fix everything, but I guarantee that the absence of money is worse.
 

edinatlanta

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The best performing school systems in the world do not spend the most money. The US is #5 in spending. Korea is the only top performing school system that spends near the top. There is clearly other, more important variables.

Hidden Potential by Adam Grant covers Finland's education system. which shot up to #1 in PISA scores in the early 2000s and continues to be a top 5 country. What's their secret? Keeping teachers with students through primary school. For those interested, here's a NYT article he wrote covering that part of the book: https://archive.ph/aPBU4

Unfortunately none of these facts matter. We have one side that has a single answer: throw more money at the problem, and the other side's answer is: cut taxes and pool all spending on the top 10% of the population.



US News rankings for best public education systems ($k/pupil):
1. Sweden ($13.8)
2. Finland ($12.0)
3. Denmark ($13.2)
4. Germany ($13.7)
5. Canada ($12.8)
...
16. US ($15.5)

World Population Review Rankings
1. Korea ($15.9)
2. Denmark ($13.2)
3. Netherlands ($13.6)
4. Belgium ($14.4)
5. Slovenia ($10.0)
...
31. US ($15.5)

I also wonder the knock on effects of syrong social safety nets comprehensive Healthcare paid family time etc have. It takes a lot to raise a kid and possibly losing a job to go to a doctors visit or whatever doesn't help
 

SixOhNine

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And while money can't solve all problems, it can solve some issues that have an effect on education. Decades of underfunded schools in poor areas doesn't just mean lower paid teachers and higher staff turnover, it means minor problems grow- a lot of schools are falling apart and things like mold, bad lighting, ineffective or non-existent air conditioning absolutely hinder the ability of kids to focus and learn. I also think all kids should be able to get free breakfast and lunch at school.
 

edinatlanta

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And while money can't solve all problems, it can solve some issues that have an effect on education. Decades of underfunded schools in poor areas doesn't just mean lower paid teachers and higher staff turnover, it means minor problems grow- a lot of schools are falling apart and things like mold, bad lighting, ineffective or non-existent air conditioning absolutely hinder the ability of kids to focus and learn. I also think all kids should be able to get free breakfast and lunch at school.
Yes and I guess to my point even if Finland isn't matching us dollar-for-dollar on education, I wonder if looking at school funding in isolation tells the wrong story. IDK though am dum.
 

Texasmade

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And while money can't solve all problems, it can solve some issues that have an effect on education. Decades of underfunded schools in poor areas doesn't just mean lower paid teachers and higher staff turnover, it means minor problems grow- a lot of schools are falling apart and things like mold, bad lighting, ineffective or non-existent air conditioning absolutely hinder the ability of kids to focus and learn. I also think all kids should be able to get free breakfast and lunch at school.
Republicans- fvck dem kids... as long as they're minority.
 

VaderDave

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Yes and I guess to my point even if Finland isn't matching us dollar-for-dollar on education, I wonder if looking at school funding in isolation tells the wrong story. IDK though am dum.
This is a good point--maybe it's better to think of the money as a proxy for attention and focus? Unfortunately, a lot of the times the "attention and focus" part is forgotten.
 

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