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Saturday, June 9, 2018

If we can't blame Florida's republican party for poor education funding, who can we blame?

When I talk about how the republican party has done all they can to kneecap both public education and the teaching profession, I occasionally get push back. 

I have heard education has no political affiliation. Well since the republican party has been in charge of the state government for over twenty years and in that time we have seen the growth of for profit charters, voucher schools without accountability, high stakes testing, woeful education funding and more attacks on the teaching profession I can count, who owns those things?  

I mean it is absurd to think these things just magically happened, when we can see they happened with the passage of bills supported by republicans and signed by a republican governor. 

Some people say both the republicans and democrats are equally bad. To which I reply, I hated Obama's education policies. I thought they were dreadful and did real damage. In this area he was a lot closer to the republican agenda than a traditionally Democratic one.  That being said, the democrats have not been completely in charge of the Florida state government for over twenty years.

I continue by saying, sure the democrats at least nationally and I am looking at you, Ted Kennedy, with your race to the top have been incredibly flawed but once again they have not been in charge in Florida for over twenty years, the republicans have and isn't a commonly accepted definition of insanity to do the same thing over and over while expecting a different outcome?   

Whatever you think about democrats, its a fact they have had practically nothing to do with how Florida pays it's teachers and funds our schools.

When you factor in cost of living, Florida's teachers are the worst paid in the nation.

What we spend per student is among the lowest in the nation.

Then when you factor in inflation we spend over a thousand dollars less than we did in 2007. If the republican party who has been in charge for over twenty years doesn't own those things , well then friends, who does?

From the Tampa Times:

Critics of Florida's public education funding system got another piece of ammunition Wednesday, as Education Week rated the state's school spending an F alongside 25 other states.
The publication, which annually issues a well regarded national rating of state education systems, noted that Florida does exceedingly well in finance equity, or the way it allocates across districts.
Florida's A- grade on that metric was the best of all states.
But Its F in spending was among the worst, tracking with past reports from Education Week. Compounding the issue, Florida also ranked lowest of all states in another key area that has gotten plenty of attention lately, its per-student funding.
Yay for us, we treat students equally as sh*tty no matter where they live.
Now will things be better with democrats in charge? I think so and I definitely hope so but what i do know, and I learned after two decades of experience is things will not improve if we keep electing people from a party who wants to dismantle public education and the teaching profession.  
If you support public education and the teaching profession then I hope you think enough is enough.
It is time for a change friends, past time, because we know what the republicans are doing, and if we don't make a change it will be on us.

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