News Herald – Juliann Talkington
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.
The Daily Signal – Collen Hroncich
“Education savings accounts are a new, groundbreaking effort to provide more educational opportunities to students throughout the country. These are private savings accounts that parents can control and use to pay for their children’s educational expenses. How it works: The state deposits a portion of the money it would have otherwise spent on the child’s education into the account, which parents can then use for tuition at any private school, for educational materials, tutoring, online classes, and more.”(more)
Education Next – Patrick J. Wolf
“Private school choice remains a controversial education reform. Choice programs, involving school vouchers, tax-credit scholarships, or Education Savings Accounts (ESAs), provide financial support to families who wish to access private schooling for their child…there are now 50 private school choice programs in 26 states plus the District of Columbia…But does it work?…The sum of the reliable evidence indicates that, on average, private school choice increases the reading scores of choice users by about 0.27 standard deviations and their math scores by 0.15 standard deviations. These are highly statistically significant, educationally meaningful achievement gains of several months of additional learning from school choice.”(more)
News Corp Australia Network- KARA VICKERY
“PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull says now is not the time for a “political stoush” over education funding, in the wake of claims his government is backing away from Labor’s Gonski plan.Responding to a Fairfax report, Mr Turnbull said education funding post 2017 was “still a matter for discussion between the Federal Government and the states”.The report, based on an interview with the Education Minister, was also hosed down by Mr Birmingham in a statement released on Tuesday morning.“This is not a time for a political stoush about this,” Mr Turnbull said.”(more)
Education News – Grace Smith
“Nevada’s new Education Savings Account (ESA) is coming under attack again, with the group Educate Nevada Now suing the state on the basis that they believe the program is unconstitutional. The ESA gives parents the opportunity to use state funds to assist them in paying for their child’s private school tuition or a host of other education-related expenses. Stephanie Eisenberg of KLAS-TV says Educate Nevada Now has stated that public school funds should be used on public education.”(more)
Forbes – Jon Hartley
“The late University of Chicago economist Milton Friedman famously observed that the United States ranks first in higher education across the globe while in terms of elementary and secondary education, however, the U.S. ranks near the bottom. The disparity stems mostly from choice. In higher education, Milton Friedman argued that the student chooses the school. The elementary and secondary school system is grounded on the school picking its students. Embodied in the continued work of the Friedman Foundation For Educational Choice, Professor Friedman’s support for school voucher programs was taken one step further as Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval made history earlier this month by establishing the first universal education savings accounts. The mechanism allows Nevada students that have been enrolled in public school for at least 100 days, meeting this eligibility requirement will allow parents that remove their children from an assigned district to use the educational savings fund dollars for their desired educational purposes.”(more)