A recent poll of Texans by the nonprofit Raise Your Hand Texas is loaded with promising results on the public’s willingness to support our schools—including a whopping 62 percent of respondents saying that public education was the most important issue for the state to address, and another 71 percent saying not enough money is being spent on public education in Texas.
And it’s not just funding where the support is significant, as respondents weighed in for higher teacher pay, and against the STAAR test and tying student test scores to school funding. You can be sure lawmakers at the Capitol will be getting these results, which will bolster our agenda for significant investments in our students and teachers. Here are a few of the results:
Which of the following do you think is the most important first step to improve the quality of Texas public schools? (top four answers)
Increase teacher pay—25.3 percent
Reduced emphasis on testing—19.6 percent
More parental involvement—18.4 percent
Reduced class size—11.7 percent
Do you think the state should pay teachers more?
Don’t know/refused—2.9 percent
Do you support or oppose standardized testing like STAAR as a measure of accountability for our public schools?
Don’t know/refused—2.6 percent
Do you support or oppose increases in public school funding tied to student performance on state standardized tests, where higher test scores means more money for a school campus?
Several questions also looked at how the public rates school both nationally, in Texas, and locally, and responses mirror what traditionally occurs in public surveys—good ratings for public schools overall with strong positive ratings for respondents’ own local schools.