Letters to the Editor

Tech levy and basic education | Federal Way letters

I have had the privilege of representing the citizens of Federal Way for the past seven years as the 30th District’s representative. I have devoted much of my time and energy to education and its funding, including serving on the Basic Education Finance Task Force, which developed recommendations that will impact the state and its children for generations to come.

Even if I had not given this level of attention to education, it would be clear to me, as a proud parent of two Thomas Jefferson High School graduates, that technology will remain an intrinsic piece of our students’ lives, for the rest of their lives. Their world will continue to change rapidly. With a strong foundation in today’s technology, they will be better prepared to learn and adapt to the innovations the future holds in store for them.

However, the state does not, as yet, provide funding for technology in education. Until it does, it is necessary for local taxpayers to assume the responsibility for providing this essential — and yes, basic — part of our children’s education.

Just over six years ago, the voters in the Federal Way School District agreed to fund the district’s first technology levy. Since that time, the district has used the dollars collected through this levy to establish a reliable and robust infrastructure, to keep computers and other technology in our schools relevant and capable of running up-to-date software, to provide essential training to staff, and much more.

This year, that levy will expire. Without ongoing funding, district and its students stand to lose ground as computers and other types of technology age.

The district has developed a plan to maintain its gains while keeping our taxpayers’ yearly contribution at the same level. I urge you to learn more about it at www.fwps.org/dept/tech/levy and — if you agree this is a necessary investment in the future of our children and our community — to vote yes.

Skip Priest, State Representative, District 30 (Federal Way)

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