AZ Teacher of the Year decries state of education budget | Cronkite News
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AZ Teacher of the Year decries state of education budget | Cronkite News


Sshe’s Arizona’s 2016 Teacher of the Year and she’s not happy with the way the Arizona Legislature is funding public schools. Cronkite news reporter McKenna Dalgarno talks with Christine Marsh to find out why. Christine Marsh is looking at papers from high school English class. But the Arizona Teacher of the Year would assign a low grade if she were assessing the state’s education budget. If they’re not going to make us better and get us beyond being funded 49th in the nation, let’s at least have a couple of years where they’re not making it worse. Marsh says there’s a teacher shortage in Arizona. She teamed up with the coalition AZ Schools Now to write a letter to Governor Ducey in January. They’re still waiting for a response. The letter was about all of the money that is going to K-12 education to funnel it into teacher pay. The coalition is asking to raise teacher salaries from .4 to four percent. It says this can be accomplished by combining 95 million dollars of already identified new funding along with several other revenue sources, including a pause in tax cuts and freezing low-income private school tax credits. Right behind me at the State Capitol where Christine Marsh and Arizona Schools Now hand delivered this letter to Governor Ducey. They would be getting back to us to set up a meeting, but we have not heard anything. A spokesman for governor Ducey says he’s in the works of setting up a meeting with current and past recipients of the teacher of the year awards, and that he values alternative insights. However, the spokesman told me the governor believes low-income tax credits are important, too. Marsh is hopeful to get that private meeting, but she thinks something as important as education should be a public debate, too. In Scottsdale, McKenna Dalgarno, Cronkite News. Governor Ducey’s office says he visits several schools a month to discuss education issues.

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