Originally posted at A View from The Edge
After now watching two Republican Presidential debates and one Democratic debate, I suggest it might be time to change the Facebook status for American public education to “Single.”
Relative to our relationship with the mainstream Republican Party, it’s not complicated at all. We’ve been divorced for many years. (In the interest of transparency, I have been a registered Republican my entire adult life.)
If fact, here was the ugly break up letter we got from the GOP about 30 years ago, shortly after the release of the “A Nation at Risk” report in 1983:
Dear Public Schools,
It’s not working between us and never has. We’re finished. I hate you and hope you die!
The Republican Party
p.s. We’re taking the dog. He hates you too.
The GOP has been clear. They don’t even pretend that we are part of their consciousness any more. Not only do they gossip about us behind our back, they are perfectly comfortable spitting in our face. The GOP is clearly in bed with corporate interests who seek to remove any positive memories the Republicans may have had with public education.
If it was up to some of the current Presidential candidates, they would simply replace the public school model with corporate charters and vouchers for all. During the 2012 presidential campaign, Mitt Romney’s only substantive policy statement on K-12 education was a single white paper supporting privatization, including charter schools and vouchers.
Several current Republicans also can’t contain their excitement while lambasting teachers during debates and stump speeches. They want prospective voters to know that conservative types like them want to punch teachers and their unions in the face. During the first Republican debate, at least half of the candidates in that crowded boasted how much they stood up to the teachers unions.
At the same time, public education has enjoyed a long, faithful love affair with the National Democratic Party.
That all seemed to change a few years ago with the election of President Barack Obama. Do you remember his campaign promises from the 2008 election that he would “reform our education system.”
If by “reform,” he meant “make things much worse,” the president has been very successful. Read more>>