Governor Gets Quarter of “New Money” for K-12 from Budget Trick


  1. The man has no vision, no awareness, no empathy, no sense of accountability. Notably, he again dismisses the working and disabled poor who cannot navigate the SSI/SSD system and do not qualify for Affordable Care Act subsidies. Daugaard will leave no footprint in the Republican-trampled SD landscape.

  2. "They'll have 1.5% more, the minimum effort the law says Governor Daugaard has to make."

    No Cory, the 1.5% is the maximum allowed by the law.

  3. Re: Your update, Cory.

    Looks as though most of that increase is from 23 new FTEs. I wonder where those positions are tied, and wonder if that'll float, given how FTE averse our legislature is.

  4. Susan Wismer frequently pointed out that we could raise teacher salaries $7,000 and STILL be 51st. Which makes me wonder, why does SD have any teachers at all. What is the dynamic that keeps them here. Could it be some remnant of the old system where smart women couldn't break in to the male-dominated high-paid jobs and so they taught? (And we did have great teachers as a result.) I wonder what the male-female earnings ratio is in SD.

  5. It actually makes perfect sense. Keep funding education at the bare minimum level and keep the public uneducated. This ensures they will grow up in a sea of ignorance, and thus vote the same people into office year after year because with a massive lack of critical thinking skills they will simply accept the status quo without ever bothering to ask themselves if we are capable of more.

    If you think education is overfunded or even adequately funded in South Dakota, it is fairly clear which party you subscribe to.

    Nothing to see here - move along now. They will act like they care about education during the next election cycle by which time the public will have long forgotten about budget gimmicks.

  6. Catherine, I have had those same thoughts. Why should the state pay more as long as teachers are willing to work at the wage/benefit levels that they get?

    I can appreciate loving our careers to make some sacrifices, but at what point will the teachers say that "enough is enough" especially when there are other occupations that can be more financially and emotionally more satisfying?

    But I wonder too, how many stay in the teaching field because their significant other has an occupation in the same community?

  7. Everybody wants to teach in larger towns where there isn't much of a shortage, so pay teachers more where there are shortages. Math and English and special education are probably the hardest areas to fill.

  8. well i'm no expert but I can think of dozens of wives of top dogs in town who taught, not because they had to, but perhaps because that was the only thing available, ... until a corporate or state board(s) position was steered their way. huge suppositions of course. not all republicans, but probably most of them.

  9. Teaching is like the service, low pay, but put in your years and retirement is great.

  10. They're not staying in the field or retiring. That's were the shortage comes into play

  11. A retired teacher friend of mine from Wisconsin is getting about $75,000 dollars a year in retirement. Haven't they been breaking up the teachers' union? The state can't afford to keep paying out at that rate. I think it would make more sense to give more money to school districts where there is a teacher shortage. Target the districts such as rural SD where there is a shortfall.

  12. The issue is that the teacher shortage contributes to retirement funding shortfalls, as they have fewer teachers contributing to the retirement pool. In addition, if the argument is that we should cut pensions for new teachers, that will be another disincentive for young people considering becoming teachers.

  13. GoJacks, if we believe the audits, the SD retirement fund is one of the few in the nation which is actually solvent. I don't think anyone is thinking we'll have to consider cutting retirement benefits.

  14. Wayne, I would like to be optimistic, but I think most pensioners elsewhere believed that their funding was solvent too, and now they are faced with cuts. I think Tara makes a valid point regarding sustainable pension funding levels; however, if leadership does not prioritize funding education now, where do you think one of the first places they would look to make additional cuts would be (probably without even considering alternatives that could eliminate, or at least reduce, the cuts)?

  15. Pensions (funds) result from percentages of wages paid into the state-managed fund. As wages stagnate, or decline, the pool (fund) shrinks. Repubs view teachers like frogs in a pot of water--slowly, slowly bring up the heat and they won't jump out at all..
    Looks like FTE's in the Executive Management budget item are going up quite a lot also, like Round's admin. Also looks like it's more important to spend money on Ellsworth than teachers.
    Administrator's DO NOT deserve the pay differential they currently garner, absolutely not.

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