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Assessing the Legacy of Arizona's Cuts to K-12 Education: An Examination of the Magnitude of Statewide Funding Reductions and their Ramifications on School Districts, 2007"2015

Description

This thesis analyzes budgetary documents of the State of Arizona relating to education spending as well as East Valley school districts to examine the extent of reductions in state funding for K-12 education since the beginning of the Great Recession

This thesis analyzes budgetary documents of the State of Arizona relating to education spending as well as East Valley school districts to examine the extent of reductions in state funding for K-12 education since the beginning of the Great Recession of 2007-2009. Previous research has found that Arizona ranks in the very bottom tier of states in education spending. Moreover, Arizona has cut per-pupil spending by a higher percentage than forty-seven other states. To assess the effects of these cuts, I determine both their magnitude in the aggregate as well as their significance to individual school districts. In the first chapter, I explain the school finance formula to provide a foundation for my analysis, scrutinize the last nine budgets of the Arizona Department of Education to measure annual changes in funding, chronicle the inflation-funding lawsuit to gauge the quantity of funds withheld, rather than cut, from schools, and sum the value of reduced and suspended funding to discover the total cost of these decisions. In the second chapter, I compile data from the budgets of East Valley school districts covering the last eight recorded years to discern and compare annual changes in revenue from the state, aggregate teacher salaries, and the number of teachers employed. Looking ahead, the conclusion discusses public opinion on education funding and the enacted budget for the coming fiscal year, FY 2016. In conjunction, these sections convey both a comprehensive history of the decisions made by our public officials that have affected public education in Arizona and an analysis of the consequences of those decisions.

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2015-05

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Reimagining the Role of State Legislative Data in Informing the Public

Description

This thesis explores a method of how political information could be distributed to the public and asks the question, what is the best way to provide voters with all of the information they need to cast an informed vote? It

This thesis explores a method of how political information could be distributed to the public and asks the question, what is the best way to provide voters with all of the information they need to cast an informed vote? It involved the creation of a website, www.azleglive.info, which republishes state legislative data in interactive and visually condensed formats and asked users to compare it to the existing Arizona State Legislature website on the metrics of depth of information, usability, and clarity. It also asked what resources users would utilize in order to cast a vote in the next election. Ultimately, the majority of users determined that the new website added needed usability and clarity to available legislative information, but that both websites would be useful when voting. In conclusion, the responsibility of disseminating useful information to voters is most likely to be effective when distributed among a variety of sources.

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Date Created
2016-05

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Electronic Health Records: Federal Policy or Street Level Implementation.

Description

This thesis concerns the adoption of health information technology in the medical sector, specifically electronic health records (EHRs). EHRs have been seen as a great benefit to the healthcare system and will improve the quality of patient care. The federal

This thesis concerns the adoption of health information technology in the medical sector, specifically electronic health records (EHRs). EHRs have been seen as a great benefit to the healthcare system and will improve the quality of patient care. The federal government, has seen the benefit EHRs can offer, has been advocating the use and adoption of EHR for nearly a decade now. They have created policies that guide medical providers on how to implement EHRs. However, this thesis concerns the attitudes medical providers in Phoenix have towards government implementation. By interviewing these individuals and cross-referencing their answers with the literature this thesis wants to discover the pitfalls of federal government policy toward EHR implementation and EHR implementation in general. What this thesis found was that there are pitfalls that the federal government has failed to address including loss of provider productivity, lack of interoperability, and workflow improvement. However, the providers do say there is still a place for government to be involved in the implementation of EHR.

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2013-05

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Political Engagement at Arizona State University: An Examination of Civic Education and Student Engagement

Description

This publication addresses the development of civic engagement programs in the past few decades. While successful in increasing what was perceived as a serious lack of civic engagement among youth, the movement has failed to address a key aspect of

This publication addresses the development of civic engagement programs in the past few decades. While successful in increasing what was perceived as a serious lack of civic engagement among youth, the movement has failed to address a key aspect of civic engagement: political engagement. Although trends have shown that the youth are much more interested in alternative forms of engagement, it is important for the success of democracy and sustaining political structures that the youth are given tools to become engaged in traditional forms of government. This paper, by analyzing data from various academic papers, will look into successful policy initiatives to increase political engagement at universities. Furthermore, the paper will look into current programs at Arizona State University (ASU) based on a criterion created from the academic resources to gauge ASU's standings. The paper will conclude with a proposal for a future ASU program. The program will be an expansion of the current ASU Experience course required of freshmen to implement a political engagement preparatory curriculum.

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2013-05

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Arizona Clean Elections: The Impact of Publicly Financed Campaigns on Representation in the Legislature

Description

Campaign finance regulation has drastically changed since the founding of the Republic. Originally, few laws regulated how much could be contributed to political campaigns and who could make contributions. One by one, Congress passed laws to limit the possibility of

Campaign finance regulation has drastically changed since the founding of the Republic. Originally, few laws regulated how much could be contributed to political campaigns and who could make contributions. One by one, Congress passed laws to limit the possibility of corruption, for example by banning the solicitation of federal workers and banning contributions from corporations. As the United States moved into the 20th Century, regulations became more robust with more accountability. The modern structure of campaign finance regulation was established in the 1970's with legislation like the Federal Election Campaign Act and with Supreme Court rulings like in Buckley v. Valeo. Since then, the Court has moved increasingly to strike down campaign finance laws they see as limiting to First Amendment free speech. However, Arizona is one of a handful of states that established a system of publicly financed campaigns at the state-wide and legislative level. Passed in 1998, Proposition 200 attempted to limit the influence of money politics. For my research I hypothesized that a public financing system like the Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Commission (CCEC) would lead to Democrats running with public funds more than Republicans, women running clean more than men, and rural candidates running clean more than urban ones, and that Democrats, women, and rural candidates would win in higher proportions than than if they ran a traditional campaign. After compiling data from the CCEC and the National Institute on Money in State Politics, I found that Democrats do run with public funds in statistically higher proportions than Republicans, but when they do they lose in higher proportions than Democrats who run traditionally. Female candidates only ran at a statistically higher proportion from 2002 to 2008, after which the difference was not statistically significant. For all year ranges women who ran with public money lost in higher proportions than women who ran traditionally. Similarly, rural candidates only ran at a statistically higher proportion from 2002 to 2008. However, they only lost at higher proportions from 2002 to 2008 instead of the whole range like with women and Democratic candidates.

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2016-12