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Final Word: School starting in Arizona tops our list for week

It’s been a busy news week.

PFC Bradley Manning was sentenced… wait, sorry, Chelsea Manning.

In Syria, Bashar Al Assad allegedly used chemical weapons on the rebels, killing more than 1,500.

A woman in Georgia saved, perhaps, an entire school from suffering a Newtown-like shooting.

The president came out against the high cost of college.

Teenagers in Oklahoma shot and killed an Australian student who was jogging through their neighborhood, they sayid because they were bored.

And yet for many of us, the most important thing that has happened is that our kids finally went back to school. Arizona State University and University of Arizona, many high schools just finished their first week, and at our house, fourth grade began.

We changed schools this year, mostly because my fears of a lack of school funding were finally realized and in my school district, class size went up and service offered went down.

No more spelling tests at our public schools and more students for each teacher. It seems like every year, we get less and hear that we are spending more.

I know, money doesn’t solve all education problems, but teachers cant’ teach for free. And some kids need more help than others.

Could we start with the fact that we have more than 225 school districts in Arizona? That’s a lot of supervisors, school boards, and bureaucracy.

Could we also create different schools within the districts that tailor more specifically to a particular type of student?

And could we finally implement common core standards across the state and evaluate teachers on their ability to teach to those standards?

Then, maybe, we could give bonuses to the teachers who actually get results from their students during the school year.

Look, I don’t have all the answers, but sometimes you have to knock the house down and build again instead of remodeling. Or trying to spend less and get more.