Do you ever hear the results of an opinion poll and think to yourself, how could that possibly be true? A recent poll conducted about funding for education will answer that question.
If you recall, when signing the debt ceiling compromise this week, the President once again insisted that we need to spend more money on education. This week, Education Next released the results of a poll concerning that subject, which the President will no doubt refer to in support of his position. However, when you hear him say that the American public overwhelming favors more spending on education, know that the President is being selective in what he tells you.
When the question asked was, “do you think we should spend more money on education”, 65% of responders said “yes”.
When the question asked was, “we currently spend $13,000 per student on education. Do you think we should spend more”, only 49% of responders said “yes”.
But, when the question asked was:
Do you think that taxes to fund public schools around the nation should increase, decrease or stay about the same?” [emphasis supplied],
only 35% supported an increase in taxes to fund education. Curiously, only 28% would be willing to have their taxes increased to spend more on education.
So there is the nation’s debt crisis in a nutshell. If people aren’t told that nearly $13,000 is currently being spent per pupil, or if they aren’t reminded that there is no such thing as a free lunch, they can be persuaded to think schools should be spending still more.
Just think about that the next time the President says that the polls reflect that Americans want to spend more on this or that. Your first thought should be, “what was the question”.