WHY isnt it working?

Because It is NOT supposed to! As I pointed out recently, the fact that the Walker administration says they are “reforming” education, is a myth!

In reality, while a teacher’s role in the classroom is incredibly important, it pales in comparison to other external factors a child confronts on a daily basis(socio-economic background, parents education level, poverty level, language skills, neighborhood violence, hunger, etc…) . To pretend to “reform” education without addressing these issues assures failure.
The problem is the current “reform” crowd is not interested in improving education, their sole purpose is to privatize it.

I also pointed out that the privatize education crowd has become very brazen, they will tell us their goals, if we only listen.

Yet the cabal from Fitzwalkerstan insist its working, so much so they came up with a website pointing out that a mandatory teacher pay cut was the cure to the public schools! Fortunately few are buying it.

As they found out in Superior, WI, laying off teachers and cutting programs is not the best way to IMPROVE public education. The same sentiment comes from the other side of the state in Middleton- Cross Plains, where school board president Ellen Lindgren weighed in:

Ellen Lindgren: I don’t see how any school board member could say that cutting $1.6 billion from public education in Wisconsin is making our schools better. We’ve been cutting a long time thanks to revenue caps, and with inflation we don’t have much wiggle room. We’re balancing our budgets on the backs of our employees. Whether or not you think that’s fair, that is what happened. So we got a very short-term solution to a much broader, longer-term statewide funding problem that was not the fault of the public schools, or their employees.

When we’ve lost literally thousands of teachers statewide it doesn’t make sense to me that this, somehow, is better.

I think what Gov. Walker has done to public education has been a huge mistake. It was a one-sided decision with no input from educators, administrators, school boards. The changes are punishing to our students, and it comes at a time when we most need to be investing in improving public education for the future.

Also recently Cap Times education reporter Susan Troller has resigned, and left with one final column on her observations. One particularly stood out:

Not all “reformers” actually want reform.

There’s a well-funded national campaign made up of conservative think tanks, public relations firms and big-money donors whose mission is to discredit public schools. Some of them just hate the teacher unions and disdain teachers and all public workers.

Others are ideologically opposed to the notion of public education and would like to privatize everything; their releases provide a steady litany about the advantages of “choice” schools, from private voucher schools to for-profit charters that operate with public dollars.

Finally(for now) and probably the poster example for why we need to stop the privatization of our schools, comes from a recent Isthmus story. In his story, Scott Wittkopf, points out that in WI, the front man for the private school movement is convicted felon Scooter Jensen(who has NO business in our state capitol or around our children and schools):

Jensen was first elected to the Assembly in a 1992 special election for the 32nd Assembly District; he served as Assembly speaker from 1995 to 2002.

Jensen was a powerful legislator and speaker who conducted “the Legislature like an orchestra,” says Mark Pocan. He had all but announced he would run for governor in 2002, but then the caucus scandal broke, revealing widespread partisan campaigning by Democrats and Republicans on state time.

Jensen’s political career came to an abrupt end in 2006 when he was initially convicted of three felonies and a misdemeanor for misconduct in public office. The felonies were overturned, and in 2010 Jensen agreed to a plea deal to pay a $5,000 civil forfeiture and reimburse the state for legal fees. He is barred from seeking public office again due to the misdemeanor involving a violation of public trust.

Though no longer an elected official, Jensen still holds considerable sway through his work with the American Federation for Children and other groups that promote the establishment of private charter schools in Wisconsin.

Since 2010 the American Federation for Children has spent more than $2.6 million in Wisconsin on Walker’s governor’s race and the recall elections.

“[Jensen] is more powerful now than he was as speaker,” says state Sen. Jon Erpenbach (D-Middleton).

Jensen disagrees: “If I was speaker, I would have gotten everything I wanted [for charter school advocacy groups].”

A convicted felon who despises the democratic process and has nothing but disdain for anything but making money, is the face of the charter school movement – ‘Nuff Said!

We need to change the dialogue to make, when they say”It’s working”, mean, the destruction of public schools and the rise of our taxpayer dollars being shifted to private and charter schools. In terms of actual REFORM to improve our public schools? It is NOT working because they have no intention of it ever working.


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1 thought on “WHY isnt it working?

  1. Good call. The plan is to funnel taxpayer dollars to voucher organizations and others who get money from privatization. It hs NOTHING to do with saving money or getting better results.

    In fact, making things better would mean there wouldn’t be as much for the tightie righties to complain about, and that doesn’t make for good material to stir people up on 620 and 1130AM. This is why Walker never did anything in Milwaukee County to improve the fiscal situation or funding of the pensions- he’d rather it continue to decline and get FUBAR’ed, and have something to “reform” against.

    And that’s why these people have to be shown the door sooner than later, because facts and results don’t matter to this crew- only money and power.

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