Public Education

Current public education funding in Colorado is a disgrace. Colorado is 40th in the nation for per pupil spending (42nd adjusting for regional cost differences), and 50th in the nation in competitive wages offered to teachers.

Policy

• Increase funding with the repeal of TABOR and finding other funding avenues not limited by TABOR

• Support teachers’ unions and offer competitive salaries to fill the ever-increasing teacher gap and ultimately reduce classroom sizes

• Reduce the cost of in-state college tuition – the burden of higher education costs should not be placed on the shoulders of students

• Charter schools, if they wish to receive continued public funds, should be forced to adhere to certain regulatory and transparency requirements

o   Charter school teachers need to be trained and certified and allowed union membership

o   Charter school financial records should be regularly audited by the official district school board and any                       related accountability committees, and made available to the public

o   Charters must make enrollment decisions without the knowledge of any intervention or accommodation                     plans needed for any applying school. Such questions should only be asked after enrollment has already                     been process and registration has begun

o   Charters can be revoked before expiration of the official charter should regulations be violated

• Increase funding for vocational programs in traditional subjects, as well as in newer fields such as computer science and coding, preparing our students who cannot afford college education or simply do not want to attend college for careers that can earn a solid living with marketable skills

• Fund tuition-free full-day kindergarten for all Colorado students

• Increase the number of families who can utilize tuition-free or reduced-tuition preschool options by lowering qualifying requirements and increasing funding

• Provide funding for districts and schools that offer life skills classes, such as nutrition and personal finance, to all students

• Update nutritional guidelines to ensure that students eating school-provided meals have their nutritional needs met and are eating fresh fruits and vegetables

• Limit testing time and teaching hours spent on testing – ideally moving to a scenario where the PSAT serves as the state high-school achievement test

• Protect our public school districts from union-busting and privatization efforts