Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Florida is broken for public education and so many others too.
For a long time now the republican dominated state legislature has blamed teachers and public schools for the ills of society. They have hoped people wouldn’t notice that they have saddled them with bad policies and a lack of resources and they have used flowery rhetoric like school choice and accountability to fuel their privatization agenda. Well who holds them accountable because it certainly has not been the voters?
In Florida they have sent tens of millions to for profit charter schools and over a billion to unregulated private schools. All reputable studies also say as a group we have no idea how voucher schools are doing because they have barely any accountability measures in place and charter schools as a group perform worse.
When Speaker Crisafulli adjourned the house three days early without a budget agreement, he not only thumbed his nose at 800 thousand uninsured Floridians, teachers and students but at all the citizens for Florida as well and not by just shirking this important responsibility as they have also ignored the will of the people with the class size amendment and with the acquisition of conservation lands.
Florida needs a better mechanism than elections, where just a third of the people because they are so disillusioned or apathetic bother to participate, to hold our political leaders accountable, because for public schools and way too many others the current system, just serves special interests or the selfish interests of those elected.
Public education should be given to a non-partisan authority of experts to run and salaries and benefits of legislators should be withheld until budgets are passed.