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CEA Media Release: Colorado’s Education Professionals Are Encouraged by Governor Polis’ Proposed State Budget

Posted on: November 1, 2022
Posted By: CEA Communications
Posted in: Press
Tagged: Education Funding

Lauren Stephenson
Director of Communications
Colorado Education Association

November 1, 2022

Colorado’s Education Professionals Are Encouraged by Governor Polis’ Proposed State Budget
Turns Attention to Legislature to Secure Necessary Investment

DENVER, CO – As the representative of Colorado’s 39,000 education professionals, the Colorado Education Association is encouraged by the level of education funding put forth in Governor Jared Polis’ FY2022-23 state budget announced today.

In particular we commend his dedication to increased investment in per-pupil funding and special education support. In conjunction with the 2021-2022 budget, it’s clear that the Governor understands that there are few priorities that are as critical and consistently underfunded as Colorado’s education system.

We look forward to working with the many public education champions in the legislature to build upon this funding to secure the largest possible investment in our education system.

The CEA and its members are fighting for nothing less than a fully-funded education system. Our state’s robust economy ranks 6th in the nation, but ranks 49th in salaries for education professionals, and 40th in per-pupil spending. By the most generous measure, Colorado’s students have been robbed of at least $10 billion since the implementation of the Budget Stabilization factor in 2010.

To right decades of chronic disinvestment will require not just the elimination of the Budget Stabilization factor, but a reimagining of the restrictive tax code that has led to this financial depletion. Our public schools face many overlapping, complex challenges, all of which would be remedied by an influx of sustained, substantial investment.

Everyday Coloradans understand this and respect our education professionals. 74% of parents approve of their children’s teachers and said they would support a pay increase.

“A fully-funded education system would mean attracting and retaining more educators, smaller class sizes, safer schools equipped with ample mental health professionals – all of which lead to better student outcomes for all students. This is the Colorado that our students deserve, that our education professionals deserve, and the future we all must demand, ” said Amie Baca-Oehlert, high school counselor and president of the Colorado Education Association.

“When we talk about Colorado’s education system, we’re not just talking about our children’s physical schools and facilities. It’s time our legislators realize that without an adequate public education system, Colorado cannot reasonably hope to maintain its status as a magnet for innovation, progress, and democracy. We know that this will be a long fight, and there are many significant battles along the way. But as Colorado’s largest labor union, we will continue to show up and to support pro-public school education leaders and legislation in every facet of our government. Our teachers and students deserve nothing less.”

About the Colorado Education Association
The Colorado Education Association is a membership-based organization that represents 39,000 Colorado education professionals. The CEA promise to our students and communities is that the members of the Association will lead the way in guaranteeing every student access to the best public education. By working collectively with all education stakeholders, we will provide the best public education for every student and assure Colorado’s standing as an excellent state in which to learn, live, work, and raise a family.

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