Reality Not Rhetoric: Our Public Schools Need Sustainable Funding Source

First and foremost as fathers to kids who attend public schools – and secondly as tech entrepreneurs who have decided Arizona will continue to be the home for our growing company – we applaud the efforts of educators across our state and #RedforEd supporters who are exercising their fundamental rights to petition the government for decent teacher wages and a sustainable funding source for our schools.

We believe strongly that the state has a responsibility to ensure not only an educated citizenry, but a workforce that is capable of meeting the demands of a 21st Century economy. We cannot achieve this at the current funding levels.

We take Governor Ducey’s pledge at face value – to give teachers a 20 percent raise by 2020. His job as CEO of the state can’t be easy. But at the end of the day, Arizona needs an action plan that identifies a long-term funding source for these new education dollars – and to ensure teachers get raises in good times or bad.

This has never been more important, especially for the industry we are in. Over the past decade, we’ve built Levementum into a leading technology company in which we work to enrich the customer experience using Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology, marketing automation, e-Commerce and IoT tools.

But our growth is 100 percent dependent on the people we are able to hire.

An educated workforce is vital to our future: According to the Georgetown Public Policy Institute, nearly 70 percent of Arizona jobs will require some type of postsecondary education by 2020.

As a state, we can’t fall behind. We need to embrace this #RedforEd movement, listen to educators and work together to ensure a bright future for Arizonans and the businesses who choose to be here.

Doug Guilbeau is co-founder and CEO of Chandler-based Levementum;

Geoffrey Mobisson is co-founder of Levementum and Managing Partner of E & I Ventures LLC