Skip to main content

"Flush with Cash"

I took some time this morning to read President Trump's inauguration speech yesterday. I was at school during the day and unable to watch it, but I still feel it's important to take the time to read and be aware, even if I disagree with someone.

In his speech, President Trump said this: "... an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge..."

And it's that part of his speech in particular that I take offense to.

To make that claim about schools in America--and particularly those in Michigan--is false.

I am a teacher. I serve on a board of education in another district. And I can tell you that neither district is "flush with cash." Year after year these districts have had to make difficult budget cuts, often balanced by the sacrifices made by employee groups.

When I hear rhetoric that districts should do more with less, that really means they should cut salaries and benefits. Anyone even remotely paying attention to education finance knows that roughly 80% of every district's budget is spent on salaries and benefits. And in both of these districts, employees have faced reductions from 2.6 - 7 % at any given time over the last few years. I wouldn't expect a president who has the privilege of not taking a salary to understand what sacrifices like that mean.

In the district where I work, there is a teacher, a professional, who receives government assistance. It is unfathomable that a person can spend four years to earn a degree and make so little yet doing such vital work.

But what's even more alarming is the insinuation that districts are cash cows. That they operate under the guise of helping students but really work to pad their pockets.

How, sir, do you explain the rise of for-profit charter schools in Michigan? How, sir, do you explain the recently completed adequacy study in Michigan that revealed schools are actually underfunded?

But I wouldn't expect the president to know this, explain this, or even remember this. Just yesterday, he couldn't even remember who his nominee was for secretary of education. Paul Ryan had to confirm that it is Betsy DeVos. And that, friends, is even more alarming.

Comments

  1. Thanks for the best blog.it was very useful for me.keep sharing such ideas in the future as well.this was actually what i was looking for,and i am glad to came here!
    magento development company in bangalore 

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Handwritten Cue Cards in the 21st Century

I just stumbled upon this behind-the-scenes clip of Saturday Night Live's cue card process. This is intense writing. This is writing that is dependent upon trust and checks and balances. Over a short period of time, skits are written, drafted on cards, revised, and the cards revised over and over again. I also really love that SNL continues to use cue cards and not a teleprompter. Like Wally points out, technology can fail. Handwritten cue cards ensure the show goes on. Comedy is hard work. Writing is hard work. Changes are made up until the last minute to get things just right. This is a form of real-world writing.

Don't Be Misled by $778 At-Risk Payments

Governor Snyder recently proposed a $778 increase per economically disadvantaged pupil in Michigan. At first glance, this looks good. Who can argue with an announcement like this: An increase of $150 million, to a total of $529 million, to ensure that children in difficult financial situations are getting the help they need. All districts and public school academies will now be eligible to receive an additional $778 per pupil to assist at-risk students. After all, it's money for at-risk students . We instantly assume that the governor is proposing helping our neediest students, which should make us all jump for joy. And we know from the adequacy study done last year that our poorest students require greater funding (30% more!) to educate if we ever hope to close the achievement gap, not to mention their general recommendation of $8,667 per pupil as a foundation allowance (note that many districts in Michigan still receive far less than this). But the real problem of inequ

Reading Glasses

"Let me guess... You teach English?" I've been asked the same question by nearly everyone when I reveal that I'm a teacher. I can thank my distant relatives for the name change to "English" from a Polish surname that we can only remember how to pronounce and never to spell. I've noticed that revealing you're an English teacher elicits one of two reactions: 1) People either stop talking and are afraid that you will correct, critique, nitpick (<insert the pedantic verb of your choice>); or 2) People feel as if you are on their side and agree that something is taking place to the detriment of the wonderful, precious English language. And it was during my routine eye exam that my optometrist goaded me into the second camp. He expected sympathy when he said, "I once had a secretary who would use 'seen' without the helping verb." And I responded with a quick, "Oh?', hoping to move the conversation away from the stereoty