empty_classroomIdaho students deserve a first class education and the best learning environment we can provide. “Good enough” is not an acceptable standard to apply when we are talking about the future of our children and grandchildren.

And yet, we have a governor who ignores the needs of our public schools, refusing to restore operation funding to even 2009 levels, while he is content proposing unspecified “tax relief” for rich special interests. Our hard working teachers make less than they did pre-recession and work longer hours in more crowded classrooms. When the committee that sets the state budget held a public listening session on Friday, providing adequate support for public education was Idahoans’ chief priority.

Having highly qualified, well prepared teachers in the classroom is critical for achieving student success. This starts with enacting a sustainable funding policy for our public schools that assures they always have the resources they need. The Idaho Center for Fiscal Policy has shown clearly how state support for public schools has steadily fallen since 2000.

It is critical that Idaho students graduate high school ready to move on to college or other professional training. The future of Idaho’s economy depends on having an educated workforce ready to tackle the challenges of the 21st century. Idaho’s teachers are committed to the success of our students, are Idaho’s politicians?