May 15, 2018
15 May 2018

Political Update – May 15, 2018



Nearly 60% of Clark County teachers were "chronically absent" last year, new data show


Nevada Policy Research Institute
May 1st, 2018


A staggering 10,553 Clark County School District teachers were “chronically absent” during the 2015-2016 school year, according to just-released data from the U.S. Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR).

Absent for at least 11 school days throughout the year, these 10,553 chronically absent teachers accounted for 59 percent of CCSD’s total full-time teaching staff in 2016 — a rate that was more than triple the 19 percent of chronically absent teachers found at the median school district nationwide.

Because academic research has found a significant reduction in student learning when teachers are absent for more than 10 days of the school year, there has been an increased focus among policymakers and academics to better understand, and hopefully fix, this problem.

In 2017, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute found that teachers in public schools were almost three times as likely to be chronically absent as teachers in charter schools nationwide.

That analysis found that things were even worse in Nevada, with public school teachers being more than seven times as likely to be chronically absent than teachers in charter schools — the highest disparity of any state in the nation.

That disparity demonstrates the important role school choice programs can play in addressing educational issues that Nevada’s public schools have been unable — or unwilling — to tackle in the past.

“Students deserve — and need — their teacher to be in the classroom. It is simply unacceptable that nearly 60 percent of CCSD teachers are absent for 11 or more days of regular, classroom instruction,” explained Nevada Policy Research Institute Communications Director Michael Schaus.

“The dramatic difference between the levels of chronic teacher absenteeism at Nevada’s charter schools and public schools reaffirms the importance of introducing choice and competition into the public school monopoly.

“Instead of waiting for CCSD to finally fix this problem — keeping thousands of children captive to a failed system in the meantime — the Legislature should embrace the proven solution of school choice, which already enjoys widespread, bipartisan support among Nevada voters.





Quote of the week


Over the past 30 years, the federal tax burden has become significantly more progressive, with the 70 percent of all federal taxes paid by the top 20 percent of earners in 2013 representing a substantial increase from the 55 percent they paid 30 years prior.

- Robert Fellner,
"Union boss relies on falsehoods to make case for collective bargaining."
Nevada Policy Research Institute,
May 8th, 2018

Union boss relies on falsehoods to make case for collective bargaining

By Robert Fellner,
Nevada Policy Research Institute,
May 8th, 2018

In an opinion column for the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Nevada State Employees Union President Harry Schiffman argues that collective bargaining should be extended to state government workers.

Because he stands to profit both personally and professionally from his proposal, it is unsurprising that Schiffman would be willing to play a bit fast and loose with the facts in an effort to make the most compelling — albeit disingenuous — argument possible.




Keystone's Mission:

To recruit, support and advocate for candidates for public office who support private sector job creation, low taxation, a responsible regulatory environment, and effective delivery of essential state services.

Keystone's Mission:

To focus on candidate support on state legislative races and the governor's office.
    • To oppose any form of corporate income taxes or other business taxes that discourage capital investment and therefore job creation.
    • Support limiting Nevada state government spending to the rate of population growth