With the historic election of Barack Obama as president of the United States, the future, both for the country and for public education, looks brighter. He has the vision and compassion to lead real change across the nation--change in our health care, in our classrooms, and in our future.
What, exactly, he's going to do "in our classrooms" is left unsaid. That's because there's nothing he's going to do regarding California's classrooms, especially in light of the following:
Statistics show that California's children were hit the hardest of any students across the nation, with an estimated 311,900 losing their homes. Combine this with the wretched state of California's budget and you have a serious crisis.
What will a President Obama do to improve California's budget situation?
Then we turn to p. 30 to an article called "Obama win a victory for public education". It has the same quote, almost word for word, as I quoted above. We do, however, get a hint of how a President Obama will be good for schools: "Senator Obama's vision of change in America includes investing more in our schools...." I guess President Bush's more than doubling of federal education dollars isn't enough for some people.
And I love how there's no mention at all of how this savior of education will be sending his daughters to private school.
The CTA is a bunch of hyprocrites; not even a labor union, it's nothing more than a left-wing political advocacy group--and they are entitled to my money by law. This is an injustice.
Depending on who is chosen to be the Secretary of Education, the next few years could be very bad for public education. The Boston Herald editorial staff has some concerns about Obama's current education advisor, Linda Darling-Hammond:
President-elect Barack Obama is causing some who saw him as a reformer to have second thoughts.
He has appointed a prime example of “progressive” education - which, in fact, is about as reactionary as you can get - to lead the new administration’s transition team on education, Linda Darling-Hammond.
She is a professor at Stanford University and represents everything wrong with the education establishment. She is the darling of the teachers’ unions. She believes money solves all problems in the field.
She opposes objective testing. At Columbia University she pushed the presentation of “performance portfolios” for the New York State Regents Examinations. She abhors the (flawed but fixable) No Child Left Behind Act. She hates Teach for America, the successful program recruiting new college graduates into teaching, and other programs of alternate teacher certification.
She produces research that true reformers denounce as unreliable, such as a report that teacher certification is critical to student performance - something there is a lot of reason to believe is not true.
It's hard not to quote the entire opinion piece, but the above gives you an idea of what would be coming down the road under a Secretary Darling-Hammond--more money, less accountability, more fads, less real education. I don't see the Congress eliminating the No Child Left Behind Act, but I don't see a Secretary Darling-Hammond doing much to enforce that law, either.
I don't see a Golden Age of Public Education occurring under the next president, despite the choirs of angels at California Educator.