Missouri's Education Policy Is Failing Our Children, Our Future

By State Rep Doug Beck | St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO), July 20, 2018 | Go to article overview

Missouri's Education Policy Is Failing Our Children, Our Future


State Rep Doug Beck, St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)


Like me, you want to assume that every child in Missouri gets a strong, equal education no matter what ZIP code he or she lives in. Instead, continued state funding cuts and tricks to the books are leaving students in rural and poorer communities behind. In addition to negatively affecting those children's future college and career readiness, it's hurting the state's ability to be competitive and attract companies that are seeking a skilled and educated workforce.

In 2005, Missouri lawmakers created a school funding formula that was based on a simple idea: Every school district should have a minimum amount of money per pupil. With Republicans in control of both houses and the governorship, the goal was modest: $6,117 per child per year.

This puts us in the bottom third of what other states spend, with our neighbor Iowa spending $10,688 per pupil. Still, this was welcome, as the goal was to boost poorer school districts that lacked the local tax revenue needed to reach the target -- particularly smaller outer suburbs and rural schools.

This investment was priced at $800 million -- more than our legislators wanted to pay. So it was to be phased in over seven years. Initially it was a success, and per-pupil spending in Missouri schools rose by as much as 20 percent in some of our poorest districts. When the 2007 recession hit, instead of understanding that economic downturns make it more crucial than ever to invest in our children, the Legislature began to engage in a legislative sleight of hand that defunded schools and relied increasingly on funding from state gambling revenues.

The promise that gambling would ensure well-funded, quality schools was proven false within just a few years of its legality in 1984, yet in 2009 lawmakers removed a 5 percent cap on formula spending growth from the original plan, pretending casino revenue would rise to cover that gap. Of course it didn't, and nothing else was done.

Today, more affluent suburbs of our biggest cities are going to the polls and increasing their property taxes to pay for their schools -- because they can. But other kids in the state are being left behind.

In 2011, the Missouri Legislature changed the minimum school requirement to 174 days or 1,044 hours. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Missouri's Education Policy Is Failing Our Children, Our Future
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.