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Exclusive: New Survey Shows a Majority of Business Leaders Believe U.S. Education ‘on the Wrong Track,’ Many Fear Poorly Performing Schools Could Harm Their Industries

The 74 Million – Emmeline Zhao

“Cities and towns looking to grow their economies are likely misdirecting their efforts if their priorities are not centered on education, a new national survey of business leaders suggests. In canvassing 234 local business leaders on the state of their public schools and how they could be improved, Business Forward found that a majority believe that American K-12 schools are “on the wrong track” — and 1 in 4 are concerned that poorly performing schools will negatively impact their businesses.” (more)

Kids needs tax education

News Herald – Juliann Talkington

Juliann

Regardless of whether you believe taxes are crucial and helpful or unnecessary and unfair, it is important that your kids understand the concept of taxation, how tax money is collected and used, and what they can do to influence tax policy.

Here are a few kid friendly facts you can share with your children.

There are a lot of taxes in the U.S.
Individuals are taxed on property, purchases, income, wages, facilities use (tolls), and dying (death tax). Companies pay duties, tariffs, fees, registrations, and employment taxes. They pass these extra costs onto consumers as higher prices, which means individuals ultimately pay for business taxes.

U.S. taxpayers have little say on how tax money is spent.
Once the taxes are collected by a taxing agency, taxpayers have little control on how the money is allocated. As a result, it is critical that voters consider all tax referenda carefully. If a taxpayer does not like a tax he/she can circulate a petition to have the tax recalled, run for office, and/or work to get different politicians elected.

Taxes increase the power of the government.
Tax revenues give government entities control over large budgets, which can create problems with corruption as companies and individuals lobby to obtain projects bid by the government.

Taxes fund a wide variety of programs.
Taxes are used to pay for everything from roads and bridges to special projects like studying methane emission from dairy cows.

Private sector worker taxes pay for government jobs.
When someone works for a public school, a public college or university, the TSA, the military, a company who executes government contracts, an organization that receives government grants etc. his/her salary is paid by people working in the private sector. Even though government employees pay “taxes”, these “taxes” just reduce the cost of that worker, since the taxes go back into the pool of money used to pay government salaries. As a result, it is impossible for the government to operate without loans or tax contributions from private sector workers.

Tax marketing is often different from tax implementation.
Taxpayers are often more willing to approve taxes for education, so government agencies will sometimes market a tax as a way to improve schools without restricting the money to schooling.

Once your kids have an understanding of taxation they can make sound economic decisions for themselves and help their communities make wise choices about taxes and community services.

How can high schools work with local businesses to help students find passions?

Education Dive – Amelia Harper

“The Burnsville High School experiment is another example of an innovative way schools are seeking to improve graduation rates and better prepare students for the more specialized demands of the current job market. According to a 2013 New York Times article, a large survey of high school dropouts revealed that “about half cited uninteresting classes as a major reason for their decision. Four out of five said they wished they’d had more opportunity to do real-world learning in high school.”” (more)

Early childhood education key for business growth, speakers say

The Richmond Times-Dispatch – John Reid Blackwell

“Early childhood education should be seen as an investment that will pay off in long-term business and economic growth, several speakers said Tuesday at a conference in Richmond. About 85 percent of brain development occurs in a child’s first three years, so quality day care and preschool programs can set children on a path toward success in later education and careers, according to the speakers, who included a pediatrician and an entrepreneur. Let’s make sure that early childhood development is a top priority in our companies” for employees’ families, said Shawn Boyer, a Richmond businessman who founded the hourly job search site Snagajob.com.”(more)

3 Corporate Benefits Of Learning A Foreign Language And Why You Should Care

Forbes – Brian Rashid

“At the pace with which businesses are expanding the world over, this is not the time for you to remain a monolinguist. With the evolving business landscape, and thinning borders. It would be a huge disadvantage for you as an individual or business-person to be limited to just one language. You’d be doing yourself a whole lot of disservice.”(more)

Learn languages for life skills

The Baylor Lariat – Staff Writer

“Even though business students now have room to take foreign language classes to the second level and are encouraged to do so by professors, there should be nothing optional about engaging in the global community through second language instruction. Furthermore, two semesters of course work is not sufficient to move past a basic level of proficiency. Every other major, including pre-medicine biology majors who have notoriously challenging course schedules, is required to fulfill a four-course requirement. All business majors should be required to take four semesters of a language as it promotes cultural understanding and makes students more marketable in the business world.”(more)