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Politics Northwest

The Seattle Times political team explores national, state and local politics.

October 14, 2014 at 10:29 AM

New Poll: Class-size initiative has hefty lead

These are the kind of numbers everyone wants their campaign to have.

Initiative 1351, a measure on the November ballot to increase school staffing and decrease class sizes of students, has a 42-point lead in a new Elway Poll released this morning.

In the poll, 66 percent of those surveyed said they favored the measure, which would cost the state about $5 billion over the next few years — though I-1351 does not include a funding source. Of the remaining respondents, 24 percent said they opposed I-1351 and 11 percent were undecided.

Education reporter John Higgins last weekend wrote about the initiative, its costs, and how most of the school staff hired under the measure would not be teachers. But the overwhelming appeal of the measure and the lack of opponents both spell good news for I-1351.

“Time, the lack of organized opposition, and a strong underlying public sentiment in favor of smaller class sizes are all on the side of I‐1351 proponents,” according to the poll’s analysis.

Granted, it remains to be seen whether the measure, if passed, will even change anything. As the Elway Poll notes, voters approved a similar class size measure in 2000, I-728, that the Legislature never implemented and finally repealed.

The poll was conducted on 500 registered voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percent.

Comments | More in 2014 elections, Education | Topics: class sizes, education, Elway Poll

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