MREA identifies key education issues to advocate for during the 2018 legislative session that begins next week. MREA members support expanding educational opportunities and closing achievement gaps in Minnesota in the following ways.
The key issues include:
- School Operational Gaps
A conservative growth of 2 percent and 2 percent on the formula would require more than $370 million in the 2020-21 biennium. Only $29 million is projected for all state spending.
- Attracting and Retaining Teachers
A teacher crisis is growing across Greater Minnesota as more school districts face a severely shrinking pool of applicants and increased difficulty in finding qualified teachers. That has le ft positions unfilled and led to program.
- Coordinated Early Learning
While there’s wide support for early learning and preschool students receiving public preschool education of some type, Minnesota has yet to figure out a statewide approach to deliver high-quality preschool education.
- Cooperative Facilities
Greater Minnesota school districts lack funding mechanisms and need statutory clarity to build, remodel and maintain cooperative facilities for students with high needs.
Members approved the legislative platform for 2018 at the Annual Meeting in November. MREA’s membership includes 225 school districts across Greater Minnesota, 11 education districts, special education and service cooperatives and additional associate members.