by Kristin L. Allen, Virginia Education Coalition, LLC
Parents have a dim view of American education’s direction. According to Jason Bedrick in “Americans Want Choice, Not Government Mandates” (EducationNext, June 2014),
Nearly six out of ten say that K-12 education is on the ‘wrong track’ compared with only one-third who said it is going the ‘right-direction’.
Virginia parents’ concerns are founded. Over the past 40 years, the cost of Virginia K-12 education has risen 20% in inflation adjusted dollars, while SAT scores – a measure of a student’s ability to be successful in college – have remained flat or declined. Education as a whole consumes more than one-third of the state’s budget.
In fact, no correlation exists between Virginia’s increased spending and academic achievement. In September 2014, the Richmond Times Dispatch reported that more than 30% of Virginia K-12 schools fail to meet full accreditation standards. Continue reading