We MUST Do Better for our Kids!
In just two years, my oldest daughter will start Kindergarten. By the time she finishes her schooling, she needs to be able to compete in our globalized world—just like all our kids. One of my main goals in the legislature is to make sure Utah’s schools are up to that task. And it’s going to take some work.
Utah has chronic teacher shortage. Why? Because our teachers are underpaid and overworked.
Most of our teachers spend hours at home grading papers, making lesson plans, and doing other work—but are not necessarily getting paid for those hours. In fact, the average salary for a Utah teacher is the ninth-lowest in the nation. Not only that, but many of our Utah teachers use a significant portion of that low pay to purchase school supplies for their classrooms. And those classrooms often have over thirty students—far more than one educator could ever effectively teach. And when there is a problem, too many of our schools don’t have the necessary support staff—counselors, social workers, even school nurses—to take care of the issue and let teachers focus on teaching.
When our educators have this much stress, our kids’ educations suffer. But the State Legislature can solve these problems if we:
Make sure teachers are paid for every hour of school-related work they put in.
Increase educator salaries to meet or exceed the national average.
Reimburse educators 100% for money spent on school supplies.
Cap K-12 class sizes at 30 students max.
Make sure our school districts have the resources to hire paraprofessionals and non-teaching professionals like counselors, social workers, and school nurses according to local needs.
Expand programs like dual language immersion, gifted & talented, and special needs education
Every candidate running for office pays lip service to education. My kids are less than two years away from attending our Provo public schools. I know that I only have that long to get our schools funded properly before these problems become personal to me. Unlike my opponent, I will be paying more than lip service—I will be working as hard as I can to get this right. A vote for Daniel Craig Friend is a vote for better schools for our kids.