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ALEC and public education

Races for the Senate, U.S. House, etc. and other issues of national importance.

Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Ned Flanders » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:42 pm

What's left to say? You have the entrenched dinosaurs desperately trying to hold on to a bloated, failed system and you have others looking for solutions to the problem that don't involve throwing more money down the same rathole.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Henry Vilas » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:59 pm

We have a public school system with elected public officials overseeing the disbursement of taxpayer dollars. Ned wants those taxpayer dollars to go to private schools, some of which teach sectarian religious beliefs including what he mockingly calls the religion of peace (when he isn't calling them terrorists among us). All without public accountability.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Stebben84 » Mon Feb 20, 2012 5:12 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:What's left to say?


Just out of curiosity, would you be ok if we had a voucher system and there were private schools run by fringe Islamic clerics and they in turn had no accountability. On the flip side, what about schools run by fringe Christian groups who promote bombing abortion clinics. Once again, no accountability with tax dollars.

Just askin' :D
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Detritus » Mon Feb 20, 2012 6:18 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:I got nuthin', so I'm gonna bloviate.

Fixt it for ya, Nedders
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Galoot » Mon Feb 20, 2012 6:36 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:A voucher program will get us back to educating children as effectively and efficiently as possible. It will also get parents more involved.


This is a faith statement, with no discernible connection to reality.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby snoqueen » Mon Feb 20, 2012 6:43 pm

A voucher program will lead to a race to the bottom, with for-profit schools seeing who can hire the cheapest staff and push the kids through strictly-limited programs that teach-to-the-test with the fewest money-wasting enrichments and the fewest supports for specialized needs of both staff and customers.

That's a statement of faith too, though it has more grounding in reality than Ned's statement does because it describes typical behavior of enterprises run strictly on business principles.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby ilikebeans » Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:17 pm

In addition to further enrichment of corporations at the taxpayer teat, don't forget about the nutters' wet dream of having the schools less accountable to teaching about reality. In other words, we'll get more childhood indoctrination into:

- Organized, in-class prayer.
- Creationist bullshit instead of scientifically-sound theories on evolution.
- Denialist bullshit instead of scientifically-sound theories on global climate change.
- The only acceptable method of birth control is abstinence.
- Abortion is a sin in all situations.
- Revisionist history on topics such as civil rights, slavery, and workers' rights.
- Revisionist history on the New Deal and anything else they regard as "socialism".

The dismantling of public education is a priority for many, many reasons. Smarter, well-rounded citizens isn't one of them.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby WestSideYuppie » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:40 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:What's left to say? You have the entrenched dinosaurs desperately trying to hold on to a bloated, failed system and you have others looking for solutions to the problem that don't involve throwing more money down the same rathole.

This is an empty statment. You could use it to defend privatizing any government activity. Let's try it out on the reconstruction of infrastructure in Iraq following the fall of Saddam:

Bloated, failed system? Check. At the time, the Republicans would have described any large scale public work in those terms.

Others looking for solutions? Check. The lobbyists for the private contractors.

Solutions that don't involve throwing more money down the same rathole? Check. Different rathole.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Igor » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:21 pm

- Nothing is more frustrating than listening people debate "vouchers will solve everything" vs. "the current situation with better union contracts (and repealing the QEO) will solve everything". There are a million options, but those two are the ones that get trotted out again and again.

- I am under no illusions that a voucher system will solve all or any woes. However, it is worth asking why inner city parents are willing to send their kids to another school where they will not perform any better. I am guessing they want a school with more safety, more options, or different classmates. Maybe it would be worth asking those parents why, and then *doing something* about it?
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby WestSideYuppie » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:41 pm

Why do so many people enroll in the University of Phoenix?

I'm all for doing something about it. I don't believe that all of the parties in this debate are innocent:

"I hope I live to see the day when, as in the early days of our country, we won't have any public schools. The churches will have taken them over again and Christians will be running them." -- Jerry Falwell
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby snoqueen » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:51 pm

Parents have reasons they want to send their kids to a different school, but what makes a good school or good educational outcomes is learned by study and comparison. We should use research in designing a variety of schools that meet people's needs, both parents and kids. Asking the parents is only the beginning. We have to know what actually works in meeting their needs and not spend money on things that demonstrably do not work.

I don't think turning it all over to private corporations will preserve fairness, a balanced and sound curriculum (as described in another post above), and a good social mix that exposes kids to the reality of our society and models positive ways of dealing with everyday social issues and conflicts.

And I don't think the goals of those corporations, or of ALEC, are ones our society should or will embrace. Outsourcing has had very mixed results (to put it politely) in other governmental endeavors. Voucher schools -- from the University of Phoenix on down -- are no different.
Last edited by snoqueen on Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Detritus » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:51 pm

Igor wrote:- Nothing is more frustrating than listening people debate "vouchers will solve everything" vs. "the current situation with better union contracts (and repealing the QEO) will solve everything". There are a million options, but those two are the ones that get trotted out again and again.

And who has said that second thing, other than you, just now?
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Igor » Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:22 pm

Detritus wrote:
Igor wrote:- Nothing is more frustrating than listening people debate "vouchers will solve everything" vs. "the current situation with better union contracts (and repealing the QEO) will solve everything". There are a million options, but those two are the ones that get trotted out again and again.

And who has said that second thing, other than you, just now?


I thought it was pretty obvious I was using exaggeration for effect - I am unaware of anyone that has claimed either option will solve everything. But the focus seems to be on increasing vouchers or increasing spending on the broken system that has the problem in the first place.
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Detritus » Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:16 pm

Igor wrote:
Detritus wrote:
Igor wrote:- Nothing is more frustrating than listening people debate "vouchers will solve everything" vs. "the current situation with better union contracts (and repealing the QEO) will solve everything". There are a million options, but those two are the ones that get trotted out again and again.

And who has said that second thing, other than you, just now?


I thought it was pretty obvious I was using exaggeration for effect - I am unaware of anyone that has claimed either option will solve everything. But the focus seems to be on increasing vouchers or increasing spending on the broken system that has the problem in the first place.

Again, who has said that second thing?
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Re: ALEC and public education

Postby Igor » Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:39 pm

Detritus wrote:
Igor wrote:I thought it was pretty obvious I was using exaggeration for effect - I am unaware of anyone that has claimed either option will solve everything. But the focus seems to be on increasing vouchers or increasing spending on the broken system that has the problem in the first place.

Again, who has said that second thing?


Have you been around the last year? I think plenty of people in town that have called for increasing school spending and stronger teachers unions.
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