When 9News reporter Nelson Garcia wanted a different perspective on school district bond elections, he asked to interview me. If you want to see the video – or just read it in print so to avoid having to look at me – the story is here:
Ben DeGrow is the education policy analyst for the Education Policy Center within the Independence Institute, which is a conservative political think tank. DeGrow says too many middle class families are coping with high gas prices and a poor real estate market to think about raising their own property taxes for schools.
“This may be a tough year for JeffCo and other metro school districts to be asking for money,” said DeGrow.
JeffCo is just one of the major districts around Denver poised to ask voters for money this fall. Denver, Aurora, and Cherry Creek have also expressed the intent to place bond issues or mill levies on the November ballot along with a number of other districts across Colorado.
DeGrow says school districts place bond issues and mill levies on the ballot during presidential elections because that means more un-informed voters will come to the polls.
“You’re reaching into a base of voters who don’t necessarily have as much information who may be inclined to just give more money to schools because it sounds like the right thing to do,” said Degrow.
DeGrow says, instead, people should be asking districts how it can spend the money it already has more efficiently instead of trying to fix all problems by throwing more money into the system.
“Most studies show, there’s no connection between how much is spent and what the results are as far as student tests,” said DeGrow.
You may now return to your regularly scheduled blog reading.