Dear MRTA Members
Your action is needed regarding the Conference Committee report (CCR) onHCS SCS SB 493 soon to be voted out of committee for House and Senate approval. The original bill, SB 493, as introduced, dealt with the school transfer issue of unaccredited school districts in Saint Louis and Kansas City. NOW the legislation in both the House and Senate versions have been amended to include vouchers and expansion of Charter Schools.
MRTA's Legislative Platform (click here) states MRTA is opposed to Vouchers. Now that SB 509 has become law (major tax cuts for corporations) state revenue will become more and more scarce. Enacting vouchers will take even more funding away from public schools. This is particularly negative since the Foundation Formula is currently $600 million underfunded! Less tax dollars for public schools equals: fewer teachers hired, lower teacher salaries, less contributions to the retirement systems, and could result in bankruptcy which would cause the consolidation of poorer rural school districts. There is also the question of the separation of church and state, vouchers mean tax dollars going to private and parochial schools.
SUGGESTED CORRESPONDENCE TO YOUR STATE REPRESENTATIVE AND STATE SENATOR
Dear Representative XXXXX
Dear Senator XXXXX
As voter, tax payer, and MRTA member in your district please oppose and vote NO on the Conference Committee Report (CCR) on HCS SCS SB 493 if the report contains vouchers in any form and/or the expansion of charter schools.
This is the last week of the 2014 Legislative Session. The Session ends Friday at 6:00 PM. Please write today and please stay tuned.