Sunday, May 11, 2008

Washington School Districts Short of Funds

It was recently reported that Washington State Schools allowed $13.2 million to slip away over Union Laws on Collective Bargaining. How ironic is it that today they are crying budget shortfalls?

It was just days ago that reports of Washington State Schools Lose $13.2 Million Over Union Laws became known. Today’s Columbian newspaper contains an article, School districts scramble to make good on pay raises mentioning that one Clark County School District, Evergreen, which was slated to receive a portion of the lost $13.2 million grant from the National Math and Science Initiative, is facing a $1.6 million shortfall.

While the grant from NMSI may not have been earmarked for all teachers and every school, receiving a portion of a $13.2 million grant for even some sure could have gone a long way to off setting dwindling funds for schools.

One factor in this shortfall,

“Immediately in 2001-02, Washington’s economy tanked. The state skimped on salary hikes for a few years. Then, given a flush cash reserve from 2007, legislators met teachers union demands and voted to make amends, with catch-up payments starting in 2008-09.”

Also being reported,
Rep. Deb Wallace, D-Vancouver, said legislators know fundamental change is needed. She and colleagues are waiting for recommendations from the basic education funding task force they assigned to find potential solutions by December.

“The definition for basic education is outdated,” Wallace said. “There is absolutely legislative recognition that we have underfunded special ed and basic education needs,” she said.

And yet, wasn’t it the Teachers Union demands that lost Washington State Schools the $13.2 million grant from NMSI?

Nice going, WEA!

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