So far this year, Seattle taxpayers have paid $753 million to the school board. Put in perspective, that hefty sum amounts to $14,000 per student, the most funding ever. As the Washington Policy Center points out, it is enough to send every child in Seattle, Everett, Federal Way and Shoreline to a private school.
But, that’s not all. During the 2015 legislative session, lawmakers increased public school spending by $2.9 billion. That’s a 19% increase over the last state budget. Lawmakers granted the Seattle school board an additional $38.7 million in additional revenue for a 13% increase above current levels.
Yet, the left is still decrying the lack of funding. A recent case of a Seattle couple donating $70,000 to an elementary school in order to retain a popular teacher has become the rallying cry for more money.
The oblivious question is where did all that money go? The Washington Policy Center offers some examples:
“The Seattle school board is hiring 68 more administrators to work in the district’s central office.
“The school board paid $28 million to end the union-led teachers strike that disrupted families across the city.
“Board members say they want to direct $1.5 million more to the free kindergarten daycare program.”
The reality appears to be that the Seattle school board has a spending problem. Making matters worse, the Seattle teachers’ union has been a heavily liability.
Unfortunately, due to the state Supreme Court’s decision against public charter schools, parents no longer have a reliable alternative for their children.