The state of public education has deteriorated over the last few decades. Too much emphasis is being placed on standardized tests that are too broad in their scope and encourage teachers to build their curricula around the tests rather than creating well-rounded lesson plans. The unrealistic methods for evaluating teachers and schools that were handed down from No Child Left Behind must be repealed.
There are many excellent dedicated teachers in our schools, but low teacher salaries prevent us from attracting and retaining the highest quality candidates. The recent decreases in the state budget have resulted in dramatic cuts to school systems around the state. The stimulus package has allowed us to save some but not all teacher salaries. Further cuts are coming which will result in larger class sizes and further deterioration in public education. Education must become a much higher priority or our public schools will continue to spiral downward. We must find alternative means of funding our public education system other than placing the burden on the backs of property taxpayers.