Policy Documents

Accountability and Learning: Assessing the Seattle Families and Education Levy

Paul Guppy –
February 1, 2011

Seattle school administrators are seeking approval of a fourth education levy in two years. Yet, education research shows spending more money will not improve learning for Seattle school children. If the Families and Education Levy is approved, school administrators will likely perceive it as a signal that no fundamental change is needed, and students in Seattle public schools will continue to experience poor educational results and a high drop-out rate. Academic measures based on state standards show that increased spending has not led to improved learning for public school students in Seattle.

Failure of the levy, however, may prompt creative thinking inside the education establishment about how the current half-billion dollar budget is spent, and that could lead to real reform and improved learning outcomes for children.