The Great Recession slammed Oregon public schools, causing teacher layoffs and exacerbating the overcrowding of classrooms. Six years after the economic crisis, school funding in Oregon had yet to return to pre-recession levels, according to a new study by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
In 2014, after adjusting for inflation, Oregon public schools received 8.9 percent less in funding from state and local sources than they did in 2008. Sure, the state has put more money into education in recent years, but until recently, our schools had yet to climb out of the hole caused by the Great Recession.
The funding woes of Oregon public schools, however, long predate the Great Recession. It used to be that Oregon schools were some of the best-funded, best-performing schools in the nation. That ended in the 1990s when two ballot measures — Measures 5 and 50 — shackled Oregon’s property tax system, which had been the principal funding source of Oregon public schools.
The Oregon legislature was supposed to pick up the slack, but it has failed to keep up its promise to Oregon and its children. So while the Great Recession further pummeled our public schools, the biggest blow occurred a quarter century ago.
Read more…(Blue Oregon)