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Press Release

2024 UEA Legislative Priorities Will Strengthen Public Education in Utah

Utah’s public educational system is the cornerstone of our state’s future and we must prioritize the well-being of our public school educators and students.
The dome and entrance of the Utah capitol against a grey sky.
Published: November 2, 2023

Education Funding

  • Provide at least an 8% increase on the WPU (est. $344 million) for a total WPU increase of at least 12%, including inflation.
  • Fund and increase Paid Professional Hours for all licensed educators ($100 million one-time).
  • Create a program for education preparation program students to provide financial support during their student teaching experience (est. $12 million one-time).
  • Fund a program to assist educators in paying for advanced degrees to enhance professional skills and support educator retention ($3 million one-time).
  • Support a Healthy School Meals for All initiative to allow more families to qualify for no-cost access to school meals (est. $3 million ongoing).

Quality Instruction and Student Equity

  • Value educators as trusted professionals to develop instructional materials that serve all students based on adopted Utah core standards and local district policies.
  • Ensure each classroom has an effective teacher by funding strategies to identify and address the root causes of Utah’s critical educator shortage.
  • Invest in programs that develop a pathway for diverse educators to the teaching profession, including in rural areas or hard-to-staff subjects and schools.
  • Improve teacher retention through comprehensive educator induction and mentoring programs.
  • Increases resources for school safety and student social and emotional well-being, including physical facilities, school psychologists, social workers and counselors.
  • Provide additional resources and staff to support educators in managing volatile behavior and situations within their classrooms.
  • Ensure that all educators have access to cultural competencies, age-appropriate responses and interventions, and restorative practices and techniques.

Education Policy

  • Ensure no additional funding for any voucher program since they lack taxpayer accountability, demonstrated student effectiveness and comparable oversight to public schools.
  • Enact a moratorium on new mandated education initiatives to recognize the overwhelming workload and stress already heaped on Utah educators.
  • Improve educator retention by allowing all entities in the State and School System to pick up increased mandatory contributions costs for employees in the Tier II Utah Retirement System.

The 2024 Utah Legislative Session presents an opportunity to strengthen our education system, empower educators, and provide the best possible learning environment for our students. By focusing on these priorities, we can secure a brighter future for Utah. It is imperative that the legislature recognizes the significance of these issues and takes swift and decisive action to support our educators and students.


Keeping the Promise of Quality Public Education

With more than 18,000 members across the state, UEA supports equal opportunities for success for ALL Utah students, and respect and support for all educators.