New Funding To Support School Safety, Trade Programs, Flexible Funding, Teacher Pay Raises And More
PHOENIX — During today’s State of the State Address, Governor Doug Ducey announced substantial new investments in K-12 public schools, including a full restoration of flexible funding, known as district additional assistance, two years ahead of schedule. Additional investments will be announced in the rollout of the Governor’s executive budget proposal.
During today’s address, Governor Ducey said:
And we are truly grateful, because the state of our state can only be strong with strong public schools.
In total, we’ve pumped $4.5 billion in new investments into Arizona schools. With our latest budget, that figure will rise to $6.6 billion. And we’ve done all of this, without raising taxes.
In addition, an even larger investment in school counselors, cops on campus, and school safety. A stronger focus on CTE and the trades. More money for the Arizona Teachers Academy, and Teach for America. And a full, complete and accelerated restoration of flexible funding-- two years ahead of schedule.
Over the past five years, per-student spending in Arizona has increased more quickly and consistently than at any time in the past 20 years. Since 2015, per-student funding has increased an average of 4.9 percent per year — compared with an average of 0.1 percent during the years leading up to the Great Recession. New investments in Governor Ducey’s Executive Budget will bring total per-student spending to $11,253.
This year represents the third year of Governor Ducey’s 20x2020 teacher pay raise plan, which provided funding for a 10% raise for teachers in school year 2018 and an additional 5 percent raise in school year 2019. At the beginning of the 2020 school year, teachers will receive the final installment of 5 percent, resulting in a complete 20 percent raise. Data shows districts across Arizona are following through, and exceeding Arizona's commitment to provide teachers 20 percent pay raises by school year 2020.
In 2018, along with superintendents, legislative leaders and education champions, Governor Ducey announced a multi-year plan to restore funding to $371 million in flexible dollars for public schools cut during the recession years. Last year, Governor Ducey accelerated the restoration of these dollars, known as additional assistance, which can be used for needs like curriculum, textbooks, staff raises, building improvements and more. Governor Ducey’s Executive Budget will fully restore these ongoing dollars for public schools, two years ahead of schedule.
Full details of the Governor’s 2020 education investments will be released later this week.