One of the current problems with education funding is that we do not fund all schools equally. The average per student may be $12,000 but even within a single state the actual amount each school gets per student varies widely. The reason this happens is because schools are largely funded on a local level through property taxes. Property taxes are a regressive form of income taxation, so poor people pay a higher percentage of their income in property tax than rich people do. However the poor still pay less overall, and this leaves schools in poor neighborhoods with less funding per student than schools in rich neighborhoods. I recommend we end this practice, eliminate property taxes entirely and go to a pure income tax system. Then all funds can go directly to the state, and be divided out evenly to all schools based entirely on the number of students. See my other suggestions on Taxes here:
Teacher Unions oppose voucher systems, even though a voucher system would likely raise teacher salaries considerably.
The reason is what it would do to the salaries of the teacher's union officials. Some top union officials are getting paid as much as a million dollars a year. They do this by forcing teachers to pay high monthly union dues. If teachers did not have to join the union, then union boss salaries would have to go down.
I recommend we institute a voucher system that would pay the school 95% of the average state expenditure per pupil. The other 5% can stay with the state education system to pay for administrative overhead. For states that refuse to institute a voucher system for all of their students we can just institute vouchers in the areas that are worst effected. You could do that using only the federal dollars that come into the state.
Here are some ideas on how we could improve schools in inner city black neighborhoods to help poor kids get ahead in life. Take a look at a list of the top 15 highest paid jobs in the US, and how many people are currently employed in each.
1. Doctors and Surgeons : Average salary: $201,800 Currently employed: 618,000+
2. Orthodontists and Dentists : Average salary: $183,210 Currently employed: 101,400
3. Chief Executive Officers : Average salary: $176,550 Currently employed: 267,370
4. Petroleum Engineer: Average salary: $138,980 Currently employed: 30,880
5. Lawyer : Average salary: $130,490 Currently employed: 570,950
6. Architect & Engineering Mgr: Average salary: $129,350 Currently employed: 184,530
7. Natural Science Managers : Average salary: $128,230 Currently employed: 47,510
8. Marketing Managers : Average salary: $126,190 Currently employed: 168,410
9. Computer and IT Managers : Average salary: $125,660 Currently employed: 300,830
10. Industrial Psychologists : Average salary: $124,160 Currently employed: 1,230
11. Financial Manager : Average salary: $120,450 Currently employed: 477,690
12. Pilot Copilot & Flight Eng: Average salary: $118,070 Currently employed: 68,350
13. Sales Managers : Average salary: $116,860 Currently employed: 328,230
14. Air Traffic Controller : Average salary: $114,460 Currently employed: 23,580
15. Pharmacist Average salary: $112,160 Currently employed: 272,320
Imagine we added these four classes to school, Pre-Medical, Pre-engineering, Pre-Pilot, and Computer & IT.
You would be giving students an advantage in getting into eight of the top fifteen highest paying jobs in the country.
Add a class on Pre-Legal, and another on Economics & Entrepreneurship and you give them an advantage on three more of the top fifteen for a total of 11.
Eight of the top fifteen professions for only four classes, or eleven for only six classes is a pretty good deal.