The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Educational Decisions

School System A spends 50 to 75 percent more per student than school system B. Why is it then, that educational outcomes for School System A are often worse and sometimes much worse that School System B? The reason is that monetary expenditures are NOT the only predictor of educational success—the quality of teachers plays a very important role, class size, the interest that each student's family has in educational outcomes, overall discipline, and many other factors come into play. There is, of course, still another elephant in the classroom, but political correctness does not allow us to mention it ... so I won't.

The Trump administration's Education Secretary, Betsy DeVos, wants to allow low income families to have the ability to choose the school their children attend—in essence, to have all schools, public and private, compete based on their quality and the educational outcomes for their students. Needless to say, because this approach puts more control in the hands of citizens and less in the hands of a large and often ineffective government bureaucracy, progressives and the Democratic politicians they support are against it.

The editors of the Wall Street Journal comment:
Betsy DeVos must be doing something right. Why else would Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, devote a speech late last week to blasting the Education Secretary for using the word “choice”—and then tying it to racism?

Sounding like Hillary Clinton in full deplorable mode, Ms. Weingarten says the movement to give parents more say over where their kids go to school has its roots in “racism, sexism, classism, xenophobia and homophobia.” Adapting the theology of the climate-change censors who seek to shut down debate, she goes on to call Mrs. DeVos a “public-school denier.”

What really frosts the AFT president is that she recognizes that the public-school monopoly her union backs is now under siege, morally and politically, for its failure to educate children, especially minority children.
Why is it that denizens of the left, rather than providing a cogent argument to justify their position, instead rely on name calling—“racism, sexism, classism, xenophobia, and homophobia?” That approach is getting so old, so cliched, it's actually laughable.

In my view, DeVos would do the nation a favor by taking a different approach. The federal government has no need for a Department of Education—it should be downsized considerably or even eliminated. Educational decisions should be left to the states and even more importantly to the cities and towns in which children actually learn. The closer such decisions are to the families that are effected by them, the better education will become. And please, spare me the notion that the bad old days of segregation and bias will return with a vengeance. Times are different. Besides the Feds have failed miserably in their attempt to make the education of our children more agile, more focused, and simply better. Like most federal government departments, the DoE is bloated, inefficient, and ineffective. I would shed no tears if it simply disappeared.

Who better to make major educational decisions than the communities that are affected by them? The closer any government decision is to the people who are directly affected, the better it will be.

And if Randi Weingarten truly thinks that because of my position I'm "racist, sexist, classist, xenophobic, and homophobic and a public school denier”, I'll respond in kind—Randy Weingarten is an idiot! Ooooooo ... this name calling stuff is really fun.