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Wednesday, February 8, 2023

The stunning cognitive dissonance of Florida education policies.

DeSantis has said teachers are encouraging elementary school-aged children to switch genders. May of his closest allies have been calling teachers pedophiles and groomers. The state legislature says the system is so beyond repair they must pass universal vouchers even for the children of millionaires too. The Republican party constantly attacks public education, calling these gov’ment schools and railing against their monopoly, which they don’t have, not even close. So, what does all this have in common? The Republican party has been in complete control of public education in Florida for going on 24 years. Not the unions, not Mrs. McGuiicuty at P.S. 109, but the republican party.     

Then think about this. There has always been homeschooling, and private schools and charter schools have been around for decades, long enough for over 700 of them to open, take public money, and close, leaving families and taxpayers in a lurch. If this hasn’t generated the competition they scream is necessary now to create innovation, I would say that ship has sailed.

The Republican party attacks, and marginalizes, blames, and lies about public education at every opportunity possible, and for what? It isn’t because they care about poor and minority children, that is for sure. Is it so millionaires can get vouchers to send their children to exclusive private schools where we could never send ours? Maybe because that’s what will happen when HB 1, the universal voucher bill, passes.

Is it to indoctrinate children in religious education? I mean #%$@ the first amendment because they think only the second amendment and then just part of it means anything. Probably because most voucher money goes to private schools that are allowed to openly discriminate against LGBTQ and disabled children.  

Is it because the unions are so mean? I am a union member, make that proud union member but let’s think about where they have gotten us. Florida is near the bottom of teacher salaries and school spending. Anybody under 15 years of experience can be fired for any and no reason at the end of the year, and my 13-year-old car with 140k miles is where. Attacking unions, which can’t strike in Florida, is punching down.   

How about because public education is dominated by women? Maybe, we know what they think about a woman’s bodily autonomy, and there is this.

Better cover your shoulders, ladies, and take whatever they want to give you and be thankful for it.

Why do they hate public education so much? I bet many of them couldn’t articulate why, using facts anyways.

Now there are problems in public education, that is certain, but after nearly 24 years of complete control, shouldn’t the republican party be responsible for them? Heck, they created most of them by starving schools or resources and saddling them with terrible leadership and poor programs. And instead of fixing those problems, their solution is to blame unions and throw all the babies out with the bathwater.

Things are about to get a lot worse. Lives are about to be ruined or hamstrung, and a I told you so, you all should have known, is the best we can hope for.   

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