41 percent of PSE members want to avoid transportation cuts

Nearly 500 PSE members took time to answer a survey about budget cuts after Gov. Christine Gregoire released her $2 billion budget cut proposal.

Here’s what members felt were the worst options:

  • Eliminating pupil transportation — 41 percent
  • Increasing health insurance costs — 12 percent
  • Another pay cut to school employees — 11 percent
  • Reducing local levy assistance funds for suburban and rural schools — 11 percent
  • Increasing class sizes — 9 percent
  • Reducing school year by five days — 6 percent
  • 20 percent cut to colleges and universities — 3 percent
  • 10 more furlough days to state government employees — 3 percent
  • Eliminating all-day kindergarten — 2 percent
  • Further reduced financial aid programs — 1 percent

In addition, many of you commented on the current economic state and how it is impacting education. Here are a few examples:

  • “Additional salary cuts to state employees are an easy but unfair and unethical tactic to balance the state budget. It is an unfair hardship especially upon single income families.” ~  Tom from Western Washington University
  • “By eliminating transportation, students will have no way to get to school and there will be more dropouts and fewer children who would get the education that they so deserve.” ~ Pamela from Kennewick
  • “Maybe they should start cutting the tax breaks that special interests get and closing loopholes. I’m getting tired of being picked on.” ~ Marsha from Western Washington University
  • “The longer I work, the less I make.” ~ Karen from Marysville
  • “As a school employee in the teaching profession, I have first hand experience in over crowded classrooms with insufficient staffing and I can report that the real losers are the students. We talk the talk about trying to improve education but we fail.” ~ Kim from Tahoma
  • “How can we compete in a global economy if we continue to take away funding from public education. People already complain that we don’t have a work force trained for the jobs today and companies are hiring people from other countries.” ~ Tammy from Monroe

We’ll use this information as we fight to preserve education funding during special session, which begins on Nov. 28, and again in January 2012.

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