Senator Tom wants to spend education money to help children learn
As reported in Crosscut, last Saturday Senator Rodney Tom (D-Bellevue) told constituents there is no reason to invest money in increased teacher salaries. He pointed to a statistical study of the state teachers’ salary structure and graduation rates which shows no correlation between the two.
Senator Tom is right. The statewide one-size-fits-all teacher pay scale is based on seniority and earning paper credentials; it does not reward excellence. Math and science teachers do not earn more than other teachers on this arbitrary pay scale, even though their knowledge is extremely valuable to students and to society at large.
This helps explain why the 32% increase in spending on public education by Governor Gregoire did not improve student learning.