I’m sorry Democrats didn’t do better last night because they might be somewhat better for public education. Maybe they will regroup and come back stronger for real public education and teacher support.
Last night during the election results, the media portrayed Democrats as the education party, but for years Democratic policymakers have turned on teachers while pretending to be their supporters.
Republicans won’t do what is right for public education. Republicans want school choice. They’ll push for separate schools, schools that lack diversity, and religious schools that will further divide us as a nation. We saw this with Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, who did nothing for public schools or the teachers who work in them.
But the Democratic Party quit caring about public schools and teachers years ago.
Both parties are complicit in privatizing public schools.
Democrats have done little to lift public schools to the greatness that they could be. They don’t support teachers either.
Both Republicans and Democrats shake hands with corporations when it comes to schools. Teachers can’t compete with big money flowing in the Democratic or Republican parties.
How many thought President Obama would finally make public education shine, lift poor children from poverty? But Obama signed on to corporate reform. Arne Duncan and Race to the Top resulted in more abysmal results, and schools continued to sink.
President Obama had people from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other anti-public ed. individuals working in the U.S. Department of Education. Gates is a charter school enthusiast and has done much to break public education and cast teachers as ineffective. Their teacher effectiveness initiative was a failure but left America believing teachers failed.
Being married to Dr. Jill Biden, a teacher, President Biden also gave us hope for a while. Remember the photo ops in the classroom during his campaign? Yet his education decision-making is steered by nonprofits like Education Trust.
Soon teachers will be gone.
Classroom teachers are the most critical individuals children will meet outside of their homes. That hasn’t stopped Americans from scapegoating them.
They’re stuck in a job like hamsters on a wheel, trying their best to do what’s right for children, forced to follow scripts created by mostly outsiders who’ve never had to walk in their shoes, who have never studied child development or teaching.
During a bizarre pandemic, teachers to whom parents entrusted their children faced schools where there were always mixed messages from the top, including a President who said to drink bleach to cure the disease!
But if Democrats can’t rise above that kind of idiocy and fight for their teachers to not let them foot the blame for the pandemic in their schools, who will come to rescue the teachers?
The main objective for teachers is to keep their students safe. This country gave them little support during the pandemic.
Where’s K-12 in the Build Back Better Plan?
Where’s serious mention of K-12 education in the Build Back Better Plan? Democrats always conveniently skip over that age group and the problems teachers face in those schools.
It’s universal preschool and community college they talk about instead.
Universal Pre-K is a school choice program with private and religious preschools benefiting. And community college offers company programs that serve corporations.
It isn’t that this is terrible, but the lack of attention to K-12 doesn’t serve this country well, and monetizing schooling isn’t about children. It’s about making money on the backs of children and deceiving parents to think it is about their children.
Democrats and teacher unions don’t always support teachers.
Democrats cannot be the education party when they support charter schools, Common Core, and fast-track teachers like Teach for America. They haven’t stood up for public education despite all the teacher union hoopla.
Where have they been on the discussion of special education? They’ve worked along with Republicans to deny children individualization, smaller class sizes.
Teacher unions aren’t always pro-teacher either, enamored of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, signing up for Common Core, and never taking a strong enough stand against high-stakes standardized testing.
They should have said no to pushing first grade down to kindergarten under NCLB.
They should be scrutinizing universal pre-k like nobody’s business to determine how it will be handled and ensure that children get developmentally appropriate schools.
A good union would lift their teachers and do what’s right for the classroom.
And while Randi Weingarten took the correct stance during the pandemic, she changed too rapidly to open schools under President Biden when the Delta Variant made children sick.
It wasn’t just the unions. The message from the CDC was always murky about schools and even masks concerning the pandemic. They let public school teachers be the fall guys.
America’s public schools are the democratic fabric that holds the country together, but neither party cares about this. Under both parties, corporations rule, and they will stop at nothing to take control of how and what American children learn.
Let’s hope the Democratic Party renews its commitment to real public education in America.