Education Ballot Initiatives

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A roundup of the changes being sought:

— Michigan and California voters will decide whether to use public money to allow students to attend private school. In the largest such effort to date, all of California's school-age children would eventually be eligible for the program. Michigan would require teacher testing for schools redeeming vouchers.

— New Mexico, Rhode Island, North Carolina and California would fund capital improvements at education institutions through the creation or sale of bonds; and a South Dakota measure would allow public school money to be invested in the stock market.
— Oklahoma would be able to dip into the principal of its education trust fund to supplement funds the income the fund generates.
— A Colorado initiative seeks to increase per student spending on education by inflation plus one percent for the next ten years and at the rate of inflation thereafter. The state would also use at least $50 million in budget surpluses for the next five years to create math and science programs at public schools.
— South Carolinia, Virginia, Alabama, Arkansas and Colorado seek to generate or distribute gaming and lottery profits to benefit local school districts
— Idaho could be more flexible with money generated by the sale of land owned by its school endowment. The money could be invested, as is usual, or could be used to buy more desirable land.

Bilingual Education
— Arizona would repeal its bilingual education program and replace it with English immersion, intense one-year English classes for non-speakers.
— Utah would make English the state's official language and encourage non-native speakers to "learn to read, write and understand English as quickly as possible."

Teacher Pay
— In Washington, the state's education employees, including public school teachers, would receive annual cost of living salary increases.
— Oregon would tie teacher pay to student learning–eliminating raises based solely on seniority

Sex Education
School Safety
Charter Schools
— In Oregon subject content that "promotes" homosexuality or bisexualism would be banned at all state-funded learning institutions including those in prisons and hospitals
— Georgia's teachers, school administrators and other school employees could get the same protection its cops do if an initiative that provides indemnification if they are "killed or permanently disabled by an act of violence in the line of duty."
— Washington would become the 37th state that provides funds to establish charter schools