People across the country are coming to the conclusion that the current funding model for K-12 education in the U.S. is not working and needs to be augmented or better yet changed. States are taking funds previously intended for school districts and re-purposing them in the state budgets and local citizenry are saying NO emphatically to school levies to raise operating funds.
We have school buildings in disrepair, insufficient broadband access for our schools, insufficient computers, laboratory equipment and other up to date resources to provide for our children’s education experience.
We can and must do better for our children and our grandchildren
I am neither an economist nor an expert on public school funding, but I do have some ideas that I would like to hear some feedback on all of you.
My ideas on funding K-12 schools are as follows
- Eliminate property tax as a source of revenue for school districts completely.
- Establish 1% education surtax on all corporate income (assessed on gross income before any deductions or adjustments)
- Establish 1% education surtax on all individual income tax filers
- Establish an additional .5% education surtax on all individual income tax filers who claim children on their tax returns.
- Establish 1% national education sales tax on purchases in excess of $100
- Enact legislation that prohibits any education funds from being diverted to any other spending, no exceptions. School districts and/or individual schools would maintain rainy day funds for excess capital (if any) for use in innovation, emergency or other unfunded requirements as approved by the school board.
Some bits of data that I looked into as I was contemplating this article are provided below. I am sure that other sources will provide different numbers for some of these data points, but that secondary to what methods could be used to fund education. So I ask that we not belabor debate about the numbers themselves but rather focus on the ideas for funding our schools
Total corporate profit in the U.S in 2010 was approximately $5,860,000,000,000
1% of that total would be $58,600,000,000
Total individual income in the U.S in 2011 was $12,949,905,000,000
1% of that total would be $129,499,050,000
Total of households with children under 18 in 2011 was 74,630,000.
Total spending on K-12 education in the U.S. 2011 was approximately $660,000,000,000
Thanks for the graphic to www.charterpulse.com and google images