There is a popular bumper sticker that reads, “If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.” It might surprise you to learn that ignorance is making education more expensive.
The annual Education Next-PEPG Survey, published in Education Next‘s Winter issue, unpacks the public’s knowledge of education issues and quantifies just how much ignorance affects one’s opinions on various topics – the most important of which are education spending and teacher pay.
Figure 8 shows what happens to support for increased public school spending after you tell people what we currently spend:
Figure 9 does the same for teacher pay:
Asked to guess, respondents estimated that the average teacher made $36,000 a year. The actual average is about $56,000.