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Teachers Union Misleading Voters
Capitol Confidential ^ | 4/7/2014 | Audrey Spalding

Posted on 04/11/2014 6:44:01 AM PDT by MichCapCon

The Michigan Education Association has unveiled a new website that uses misleading information to try to make the case for more education funding.

Education spending is becoming an increasingly central issue to this year's gubernatorial campaign, and as a result, misinformation is rampant.

Under the catchphrase, "Kids Not CEOs," the MEA alleges that millions have been cut from public school budgets. But this allegation is not based on fact. The MEA's website ignores billions of dollars provided by state taxpayers to support public schools.

Unfortunately, the MEA is manipulating the misperception that the state foundation allowance is the total amount of money districts receive from state and local sources for educating a child.

The "Kids Not CEOs" website only considers foundation allowance money. In reality, state taxpayers provide more than $2 billion per year in additional funding. This money pays for special education costs, support for at-risk students and teacher retirement costs, among other things.

The MEA's latest effort to peddle this misinformation is not a new tactic. Michigan Capitol Confidential, the Detroit Free Press and other media outlets spent a good amount of time earlier this year fact-checking attempts by Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mark Schauer, the MEA, and some school officials claiming that school funding cuts had occurred — when they had, in fact, not.

Paul Egan, from the Detroit Free Press, called attempts like the MEA's to characterize education funding "a false accusation."

MLive reviewed both Schauer's and Gov. Rick Snyder's claims and concluded that: "Bottom line: State school aid funding is up since Snyder took office..."

"There has been an increase in the last few years, that's true...," David Arsen, a Michigan State University professor, who often is cited by the MEA, told the Michigan State Board of Education. "I've seen a commercial ... [The commercial claims] 'the governor cut a billion dollars from school funding.' Well, that's not quite right."

And yet, some continue to push the incorrect — and frequently corrected — narrative that school spending has declined.

The latest misinformation gaffe comes from MEA President Steve Cook, who recently took to the pages of The Detroit News to advertise the "Kids Not CEOs" website, saying that the Wayne-Westland school district lost $40 million in state funding in recent years.

But the people actually running the Wayne-Westland school district begged to differ. In fact, Wayne-Westland officials said that if state payments for teacher retirement costs are included, state funding for the district has increased.

The MEA is running a cynical campaign for increased education spending. Rather than argue that increased spending will result in better outcomes for Michigan children — an argument the organization likely knows it will lose on merits — the MEA is pushing misinformation.

The Michigan Senate Fiscal Agency, the Detroit Free Press, MLive, and the very school district the MEA president attempted to use as a cornerstone of his commentary, all agree: Total state funding for schools has increased.

The MEA should respect the intelligence of Michigan voters enough to shift to a fact-based campaign.

TOPICS: Education
KEYWORDS: school

1 posted on 04/11/2014 6:44:01 AM PDT by MichCapCon
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To: MichCapCon

I’m STUNNED that the MEA would bend the truth. I may never recover.

2 posted on 04/11/2014 6:46:43 AM PDT by Mich Patriot (PITCH BLACK is the new "transparent")
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To: Mich Patriot
Has anyone ever been in a school district where the educrat establishment felt they were properly funded? Anyone? Even a district totally controlled by their Democrat party puppets with Carte Blanche access to the taxpayer's wallets.

Our district recently built a Taj Mahal type field house which would rival anything at an Ivy League University and hired a pricey football coach for a team with a 2-10 record. Yet they had to cut some actually useful foreign language programs due to inadequate funding.

This was an action obviously necessary due to the greediness of the district's taxpayers who were unwilling to open our wallets further. < / sarcasm >

3 posted on 04/11/2014 7:02:56 AM PDT by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: Mich Patriot

…or any union for that matter.

Oh, and on the “Kids, not CEOs” absurdity….what about kids who want to grow up and become CEOs?

4 posted on 04/11/2014 7:03:24 AM PDT by C. Edmund Wright (Tokyo Rove is more than a name, it's a GREAT WEBSITE)
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To: Vigilanteman

Govt in general never feels like they have enough of our money, schools seem to be the worst because they use “the kids” as an excuse to rape us.

However, why would anyone be surprised that a teacher’s union lies? That is what they do.

5 posted on 04/11/2014 8:42:15 AM PDT by (How many more children must die on the altar of gun control?)
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