In 2009, across the state, $529,246,426.00 (page 19) was specifically collected in property taxes for the education of our Children. In 2010, $398,577,209.00 was allocated as state aid to schools and $170,902,101.00 was allocated to the board of regents.
The public education of our children should represent the values of the families those schools serve. We must ensure that the financial and moral support needed to carry on the education of our children is met. While all budget items are tough these days, we MUST find ways to support our public educators and state employees with salaries that will retain South Dakota's most important of resources.
Families that home school, or have their children attend privately funded schools, should receive a tax break for the duration of their efforts to educate their children outside of our public schools. While I am a fan of our public schools, I support South Dakotans' rights to choose their child's education venue. In an ideal world, I would like to see parents have the full option of deciding where their children go to school with full in state portability of education funding.