Mimi Stewart is Just Nuts

There’s no other way to say it. She wrote an opinion piece in the Albuquerque Journal on Wednesday and I just find it amazing that she continues to push a half-billion-dollar annual tax hike on struggling New Mexicans.
Her first specific point is about the study the Legislature commissioned by American Institutes for Research which found that funding should be 14.5 percent higher than it is now. Even after that increase, she argues that we would only be funding a “sufficient” education for New Mexico’s children. Of course, Utah spends the least per pupil on K-12 education but has some of the highest graduation rates in the nation. Regardless of Stewart’s assertions, spending alone does not make for an “adequate” or even “excellent” education. Notice that she makes no guarantees as to what, if anything, taxpayers will get in terms of improved results for pouring billions of dollars into this broken system in the next few years.
True, New Mexico’s education funding formula is broken, but New Mexico’s K-12 educational system is broken as is apparent due to our near 50% dropout rate. Rather than killing New Mexico’s economy with higher taxes (thus making jobs harder to come by regardless of graduation), perhaps Stewart and the education establishment should re-evaluate “adequacy” and come back with some ideas (like choice). As an aside, it is worth noting that Congressional Democrats are trying to kill Washington, DC’s school choice system.
Stewart and her friends in the teachers’ unions have worked hard to keep New Mexico students from having access to similar programs and thus finding out what an “adequate” education is all about.