Prosperity Through Education Plan Overview

Public Education

Across America, the most vibrant economies put education  first. Decades of research show that a person’s earning power and a society’s wealth are tied to educational achievement. This applies now more than ever, as economic prosperity is driven by those with the knowledge and skills to compete in a global market.

Utah’s globally-recognized, pro-business climate and diverse economy have powered a remarkable economic recovery. Yet we cannot afford to be complacent. Utah’s mediocre educational outcomes are clear economic warning signs in the midst of these unprecedented transformations to which we must pay attention. A more competitive tomorrow and future prosperity will simply pass us by if we do not plan decisively for Utah’s future with innovative strategies, increased accountability and targeted investments in education.

The current conditions of our State’s key educational measures are presented in an updated  five-year plan outlined below. It is apparent that simply putting more money into education is not the answer. To be successful, any investment must be tied to strategies that significantly improve student achievement, and increased accountability for results. The plan outlined below advocates for both and is critical to our efforts to produce and attract highly educated, highly skilled people who want to live, work and thrive with their families in Utah.

To improve 4th grade reading scores:

  • Increase pre-school access for at-risk children – We support funding quality pre-school programs that prepare at-risk children to enter school ready to learn.
  • Expand optional full-day Kindergarten programs – We support doubling our full-day kindergarten classes to serve an additional 5,000 at-risk students.
  • Expand early intervention reading programs – We support result-based funding for expanded early intervention reading programs.

To improve 8th grade math scores:

  • Teacher professional development – We support a three-year program for middle grade math teachers to improve the quality of instruction across the state.
  • Improve STEM learning – We support the provision of innovative math education hardware and software to support math instruction for students.

To improve high school completion and college and career readiness:

  • Expand access to school counselors – We support additional counselor positions to improve access for students that are at risk of not graduating. We support college and career readiness and STEM counselors in every high school. We also support early intervention technology programs to assist high school counselors and student advocates.
  • Empower Students – We support a student advocate program to provide additional support for over 30,000 current high school students.

To encourage innovative teaching in public education:

  • Incentivize innovation – We support incentives for innovative teaching through results-proven technology grants and other innovative teaching strategies that improve instruction and performance of students.

Higher Education

Support for 66% Goal:

  • Enhance parental and family engagement – We support education policy that recognizes the importance of family involvement and encourages parental participation. Data shows this participation is one of the most influential determinants of a child’s success in learning.
  • Strengthen higher education – We support capacity funding for higher education to admit, retain and graduate more students.
  • Support Students – We support expanded need and performance-based financial aid for students, especially in regards to STEM-related majors.

View the Entire Plan Below