Friday, February 27, 2015

The irony of anti-public school sentiment and arguments for maintaining strong support for public schooling

AASA President David Pennington addresses the continuing attacks on public education:

“It is ironic that as we gather today to celebrate our 150 anniversary that we find our public schools increasingly under attack. There have always been critics of public schools, however with the release of A Nation at Risk, the rhetoric of the critics of our public schools began to change. Fueled by the failed federal policy of NCLB and funded by Education Foundations and Think Tanks, we find our schools today being attacked by those who want to divert public dollars to private or parochial schools, or to the balance sheet of their for-profit educational corporation. They hide behind the term 'choice', and they use a snap shot of results from international assessment and state assessments to make their case that our school are failing when noting could be further from the truth.”

“The free and general education of all children at public expense is the natural right of all children in a Republic. It is simple and it is timeless, it was and it is the right thing to do.

“Why do we spend public money to educate children with disabilities? Because the free and general education of all children at public expense is the natural right of all children in a Republic. Why do we educate children who do not speak English, or whose parents are here illegally? Because the free and general education of all children at public expense is the natural right of all children in a Republic.

“Why do we educate children whose parents don’t come to parent teacher conferences, who don’t read to them, who don’t get them to school on time, and who can’t or won’t provide the safe and secure environment they need to learn? Because the free and general education of all children at public expense is the natural right of all children in a Republic.”

Source: http://www.aasa.org/content.aspx?id=36651