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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

6 Reasons not to vote for Ashley Smith Juarez for school board

1. She raised 142 thousand dollars, or roughly four years worth of school board salary. Some might argue this just shows her popularity but if you examine who gave her the money, very few were teachers and public school parents. The vast majority and that says a lot because of how much she raised came from the gated community crowd whose disdain for public education is readily apparent. She isn't so much running for the seat, more like she is attempting to buy it.

2. Her mentor is Gary Chartrand. Mr. Chartrand is the go with his gut facts be damned chairman of education appointed by Rick Scott and where that should be enough I’ll give you a little more. Friends he went from top fifty in grocery store news to running our schools and now he wants to put his protégé on the school board. To say he knows very little about how education works would be insulting to people who know very little about how education works. He is for race based academic goals, high stakes testing, larger classes and doesn't think teachers are professionals, that their experience and education should count for nothing.

3. She was endorsed by Jeb Bush. You know the former governor who has had his Florida miracle debunked, whose high stakes testing mantra has met resistance statewide and who compared teaching children to picking milk.

4. She isn’t for fixing public schools she is for privatizing public schools. More charter schools, more vouchers, less local control, larger classes, teachers without experience or education and merit pay are all tenets of the corporate reform movement that she embraces.

5. She’s less than honest. On the Shannon Ogden show when talking about her experience she mentioned she taught at an independent school. Um friends that school was Bolles. Was she afraid nobody in Jacksonville had ever heard about it before? And if she is going to be disingenuous about that, well what else is there? Then in an interview on channel 4 she said she was a small business owner and didn't mention her association with the Chartrand Foundation. This shortly after Chartrand came out for Race Based academic goals.

6. Finally have you heard her speak? She has really mastered talking for three minutes without saying anything. And if you don’t believe me ask her to answer a specific question about education and see if you don’t get anything but, and every child deserves a first class education as an answer. How do we improve reading? Every child deserves a first class education. What do we do about discipline? Every child deserves a first class education. And so on and on and on it will go…

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