COMMENTS AGAINST D-11 TAX HIKE ISSUE 3E

D-11 lost its 2016 election for a $15 million tax increase, and more later. It also lost its demand for a $390 million debt repayment plan for “safety concerns.” Have they fixed their phony “safety” issues? No. D-11 now wants a $42 million yearly tax hike for pay raises, growing in future years! They didn’t get the voter’s message in 2016 and want to badger us each year, to wear us down. They want more money from struggling families. They get 70% of the average property tax bill, but it’s “not enough.” It’s never enough.

 

Most government school employees are NOT certified teachers. FACT: The average total yearly cost per student is over $12,000; with 25 per classroom, that’s over $300,000 in taxpayer spending per classroom. If average teacher pay is $50,000 (for about nine months work and shorter work days), where does the other $250,000 go? Bureaucrats, pensions, pay hikes, waste, bonuses, vehicles, debt service, field trips, etc. That spells “bad priorities.”

 

Student enrollment? Stagnant for decades. D-11 is closing schools, not building them. Why? Student flight. We have multiple school districts in Colorado Springs (D-20, D-49, D-2, etc.) with multiple layers of administration, because people don’t want their children to go to D-11. The main problem with D-11 is it thinks educational quality is just a matter of employee pay raises and greater pensions. Education is not a commodity that can be bought by throwing more money at it. We are sending to college many graduates who need remedial reading, writing, and math. Paying more does not mean getting better.

 

D-11 wastes our tax money on TV ads telling us how great it is, though only a small percentage of viewers have children of school age. Its union opposes parental choice, so students are stuck in failing schools. They spend their time lobbying for more state aid, more state and local ballot issues, and one-party state and national political choices.

 

Their current near-monopoly will never provide choice and competition. D-11’s only idea is millions more in taxes to benefit their system, but not children, parents, and taxpayers. We need to start over with a system that sees students as people to educate, not a source of tax dollars. Saying everything D-11 does is “for the children” is not only false, but cynical. D-11 holds little children captive for the purposes of enriching D-11.

Vote NO on 3E.