No Taxation Without Innovation

Everyone agrees, it’s time Utah starts improving public education. Real reform requires innovative minds driven by individualized learning that allows every child to reach their full potential. We should create space for teachers, parents and local leaders – the real heroes of innovation – to lead, inspire and innovate. More money may be a part of the solution, but money is only as good as the idea it funds. We are talking about big ideas and innovative solutions. Join the conversation!

How To Innovate

Explore our recommended innovations

Some Utah leaders are blazing new paths. We want other leaders to feel emboldened to try new things too. See below for examples:

We are asking classroom teachers, parents and local leaders – the real heroes of innovation – to submit their big ideas and innovative solutions for improving education.

Attend An Upcoming Event

Join us as we dive into the details! The local leaders and experts on our panels have implemented innovative solutions at a community level, and they are willing to share their experience. You can walk away from each event with adaptable innovations for your local schools.

Did You Know?

Utah Spends A Lot On Education

The 2016 Utah Taxpayers Association School Spending Report debunks the notion that Utah isn’t doing anything to fund education in Utah. The report found that public education is one of the largest recipients of taxpayer dollars in Utah. Public K-12 education received 30 percent of Utah’s state budget for FY 2015, and when higher education is included, education receives 42 percent of the state’s annual budget. 

Per-Pupil Spending Is not the most important metric

Research shows that more money does not translate to improved students outcomes. While Utah has the lowest per-pupil spending, we boast impressive science NAEP scores, Advanced Placement participation and passage rates, and graduation rates. On the other hand the District of Columbia outspends the nation in per-pupil outlay, but there is no shortage of attention on the dismal state of D.C. schools and how their system fails its students.

Some Districts Are Already Spending Proposed Amounts

The 2016 Utah Taxpayers Association School Spending Report shows that some Utah districts are already spending at the levels that tax proponents would love to see. For example, Tintic School District spends $21,000 per student and Daggett spends $19,700 per student, yet those are far from Utah’s highest performing districts.

A Tax Increase Will Hurt The Economy

A 9.6 percent increase in the current sales tax rate and a 9 percent tax increase in the current income tax rate will undoubtedly have negative economic effects. Income taxes are a tax on productivity and sales taxes are a tax on the poor. Utah is experiencing a booming economy right now. We should not enact policies that harm what we’re doing right.

It’s About How You Spend Money

Studies show that it’s not how much you spend on money that makes a difference in student outcomes; it’s how you spend it. Utahns should demand “no taxation without innovation.” Innovation can help Utah individualize learning for students, increase educational options for parents, and improve the teaching profession for educators.

Federal Funding Has Increased; Student Achievement Hasn’t

Real federal spending on K-12 education has increased by 138 percent since 1985, but long term measures of American student educational achievement have not followed. While there has been minor improvements for ethnic minorities, major achievement gaps remain among white, black, and Hispanic in graduation rates and test scores.

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It is essential to fund improvement, not merely improve funding. We are asking tax hike advocates to think big – think innovation. Stand with us!

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