Eastern Washington suffers from a lack of educational equality when compared to western Washington. Our state's paramount duty is to educate our youth, but those of us who live east of the Cascades don't have the same opportunities that the west side has. 

Whether by increasing funding for our universities and community colleges, expanding trade schools and union apprenticeship programs, or adding more non-degree certificate programs, we have to allow our children to have more choices, not less. Investing in the next generation of Washingtonians is an investment in our future. We should be working harder than ever to physically integrate technology into our classrooms, in ways that complement the continued expansion of the Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, Mathematics (STEAM) -based curricula that serves to better prepare them for the rigors of life in the modern era.

That means we need to invest in school infrastructure, new technology, and the educators who make it all possible. Teacher and para-educators aren't paid nearly enough and the conditions that they work under are difficult to say the least. 

The role that educators play in the lives of our children is one that makes a lasting impact. We need to make their jobs easier for them, not harder.