“Show me the money!” These words from the movie “Jerry Maguire” seem to describe some of the tenets of 2010 Kansas gubernatorial candidate Sam Brownback. In one of his campaign brochures he is calling for educational leaders to “promote uniform accounting of school districts’ use of state funds and require transparent online spending reports.” With many schools touting that every classroom has an electronic smart board and how “wired” they are, putting a monthly line item school budget online should be an easy fair. And besides, with nothing to hide, the public could see exactly where every one of their taxpayer dollars is going.
Another Brownback “show me the money” tenet is to “ensure that students who pass the 4th grade read at grade level.” I am anticipating that Mr. Brownback also means that these same students can write, articulate and comprehend at the 4th grade level (or above) as measured by a reliable standardized assessment. Likewise, if a student does not reach this lofty goal, they should be provided with the appropriate services that will get them up to snuff instead of just being passed along.
I would think that school leaders would have already instituted—or are at least in the process of instituting—the two aforementioned Brownback tenets. If not, hopefully the candidate for Kansas governor who wins will “show us the money” and not “show us the rhetoric “by launching these two important educational platforms.