Education By Lotto

Today is the magic day….the day when Mississippi’s new charter school law goes into effect……I bet you are asking just what the Hell is that all about…..will read on, McDuff…..

The new law allows up to 15 start-ups a year under the only authorizer in the state: the Mississippi Charter School Authorizer Board. In low-performing Districts (those rated ‘D’ or ‘F’), these schools can launch without local school board approval, but local districts will have veto power over start-ups in A, B and C districts. One of the proponents of this new law, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves, feels that once charter schools prove themselves, the A, B, and C-rated districts will welcome start-up applicants as well, but for now Mississippi’s law clearly directs charter schools toward the lowest performing communities.

Mississippi has a notoriously poor education system even though the residents are promised a better one with each election and seldom see any change…..but Bryant and his band of confederates have given us a ‘new’ program….that being one of charter schools.

Charter schools where your child’s education is in the hands of an idiot with a bingo machine….it is a lotto….and you know your odds of winning the lottery, right?

Critics feel that it is unacceptably difficult to enforce the provisions of the charter, which they say makes charter schools essentially accountable to no one. The basic concept of charter schools is that they exercise increased autonomy in return for this greater accountability. They are accountable for both academic results and fiscal practices to several groups, including the sponsor that grants them, the parents who choose them, and the public that funds them. Charter schools can theoretically be closed for failing to meet the terms set forth in their charter, but in practice, this can be difficult, divisive and controversial. One example was the 2003 revocation of the charter for a school called Urban Pioneer in the San Francisco Unified School District, which first came under scrutiny when two students died on a school wilderness outing. An auditor’s report found that the school was in financial disarray and posted the lowest test scores of any school in the district except those serving entirely non-English-speakers. It was also accused of academic fraud, graduating students with far fewer than the required credits. Yet charter-school advocates led a heated and divisive protest against revoking the charter. In addition, even greater concerns arise when, as in Michigan, many charter schools are run for profit. Many educators worry that education will suffer when funding is split between profit and educational spending, rather than going completely toward teaching as is done in traditional public schools. Studies have already shown many instances of charter schools cutting programs or refusing the educate students with special needs so as to maintain profitability. Charter schools in Michigan, where for-profit charters are common, have largely been poorly implemented and students have performed at a much lower level than their traditional public school counterparts.

This will do little to improve the education of all students….it will however help some to a good education and the raising of profits for the private companies that will be in control…..

Is this the educational system you were promised or for that matter the one you voted for in the last comedy we call elections?

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Better Education Means Better Jobs

Recently at an economic forum some interesting points were made:

The governor also talked about the state’s graduation rates and the need for more work-force training. High school graduation rates, Barbour said, might improve if students were directed to career paths early in high school.More education, generally, translates into people with better paying jobs with more disposable income that would translate into increased tax collections.

You would think that if that was the attitude that the governor and the legislature would be gung-ho on educational bills, right?

Is Education Really That Important?

An interesting question and in my opinion it is NOT!  I will bet that you are wondering why I would make such an assertion…….let me explain…..

In an article in the NY Times:

A law adopting statewide high school exams for graduation took effect in Pennsylvania on Saturday, with the goal of ensuring that students leaving high school are prepared for college and the workplace. But critics say the requirement has been so watered down that it is unlikely to have major impact.

The situation in Pennsylvania mirrors what has happened in many of the 26 states that have adopted high school exit exams. As deadlines approached for schools to start making passage of the exams a requirement for graduation, and practice tests indicated that large numbers of students would fail, many states softened standards, delayed the requirement or added alternative paths to a diploma.

Okay, the deal is that if they lower standards for graduation then more students will be able to enter college…is that about it?

First, this sounds like BS……if education isa the key to a better economy would not making it more difficult to graduate than easier….would not a more thoroughly educated student be a better candidate?

Second, this sounds like a snow job….it sounds more like trying to get all states to have an elevated graduation amount so that they can get all those federal funds for a good record?

Mississippi is one of the least educated states in the country and it would NOT be good to lower the standards for graduation….the only people that would benefit would be politicians…..

Third, NO matter how low we take the standards, the recession will preclude many from entering into college….the middle class is struggling with the economy and lowering standards for high school graduation is NOT going to assist those people to get their children into college…..

It is as simple as that…..nowhere is lowering the standards a good idea….will not help the economy, will not end the recession and it will definitely NOT be good for the students that all are using as pawns in this money game…..

Pat On The Back For Home Schooling

The Mississippi legislature has a resolution before it to recognize the state’s “unwavering” support for home schooling with House Concurrent Resolution 77  which states:

A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION RECOGNIZING MISSISSIPPI’S UNWAVERING COMMITMENT TO EDUCATION IN THE DESIGNATION OF THE WEEK OF MAY 11-15, 2009, AS MISSISSIPPI HOME EDUCATION WEEK IN THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI.

Let us be honest home schooling for the most part is attempted because the parents do not want their children mixing with minorities or other religious teachings.  It is a form of racism.

The resolution spotlights the home schooling of Geo. Washington and Patrick Henry…thinking…it was in a frontier area and the early 18th century, there was about 4 schools in the Colonies and home schooling was about the only way to be educated.  But the most ludicrous example was Booker T. Washington….the man was born in slavery and they were not ALLOWED to be educated….so home schooling was the only option his family had.

There is a good reason that home schooling in Mississippi should be recognized and that is that the educational programs in Mississippi suck wind.  instead of making the hime schooling sound more noble than it is, maybe they should use it as a way to justify improving education in the state.

Being Educated In Mississippi

The truth is…..one does not have to be educated….that could explain a lot of the causes of the decline in the state’s living standards.

Mississippi was moving to make school attendance mandatory…but as usual no need for that because an educated population would demand more of their government than one with the IQ of their shoe.

The attempt was HB 16:

AN ACT TO REENACT SECTIONS 37-13-80 THROUGH 37-13-89, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH ESTABLISH THE OFFICE OF DROPOUT PREVENTION AND THE OFFICE OF COMPULSORY SCHOOL ATTENDANCE ENFORCEMENT WITHIN THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND PRESCRIBE THOSE OFFICES’ POWERS AND DUTIES; TO REPEAL SECTION 37-13-90, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH REPEALS SECTIONS 37-13-80 THROUGH 37-13-90, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, WHICH CREAE THE OFFICE OF COMPULSORY SCHOOL ATTENDANCE AND ENFORCEMENT AND PRESCRIBES ITS POWERS AND DUTIES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

But the attempt is dead…it died in committee where ALL good bills wind up in the Mississippi legislature.

Stuck In The Past

Just when you think Mississippi is ready to move into the 21st century you are sadly mistaken.  Recently a bill was introduced into the state legislature that would create a pilot program for sex education in the state.  That bill would have been HB 234 which stated:

AN ACT TO REQUIRE THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION, ACTING JOINTLY WITH THE STATE BOARD OF HEALTH, TO ESTABLISH A COMPREHENSIVE SEX EDUCATION PILOT PROGRAM; TO REQUIRE THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH TO DETERMINE THE GRADE OR GRADES IN WHICH THE PILOT PROGRAM WILL BE IMPLEMENTED; TO REQUIRE THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION TO SELECT SCHOOL DISTRICTS FOR PARTICIPATION IN THE PROGRAM; TO REQUIRE THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TO DEVELOP CERTAIN PROGRAMS AND STRATEGIES PROMOTING PREGNANCY PREVENTION AND PROVIDING INFORMATION ON THE CONSEQUENCES OF UNPROTECTED, UNINFORMED AND UNDERAGE SEXUAL ACTIVITY; TO PROVIDE THAT NO STUDENT SHALL BE REQUIRED TO PARTICIPATE IN ANY CLASS OR COURSE IN THE PILOT PROGRAM IF THE STUDENT’S PARENT OR GUARDIAN SUBMITS WRITTEN OBJECTION TO THAT PARTICIPATION; TO REQUIRE THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, WITH THE INPUT OF THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH, TO SUBMIT A REPORT ON THE PILOT PROGRAM TO THE CHAIRMEN OF CERTAIN LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEES BEFORE JANUARY 1, 2012; TO AMEND SECTIONS 41-79-5 AND 37-14-3, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, IN CONFORMITY WITH THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

All in all it would have proven that Mississippi was trying to find its way into the new century….but as normal the state will do everything possible to stay in the cultural dark ages.  The bill died in committee.  So Mississippi will continue to stress a proiven failure as their answer to sex ed…abstinance.  The program has not worked anywhere in the US, but that is okay for Mississippi and the religious right will continue to preach a worthless program and wonder why they have an ever exploding teen pregnancy problem.

Do You Have Twins?

If so, is this legislation needed?  Oh sorry, that would be the proposed bill HB 1191.  This bill proposes that the parents have the option to keep their twins in the same classes or change it, for that matter, the same or different schools.  Have you parents of twins been concerned about this sort of thing?  Does the state need revision of the Code to cover this?

In case there is any confusion on what the act would say.

AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 37-11-1, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO AUTHORIZE PARENTS OF TWINS OR HIGHER ORDER MULTIPLES TO REQUEST THAT THE CHILDREN BE ASSIGNED TO THE SAME CLASSROOM OR SEPARATE CLASSROOMS IN THEIR PUBLIC SCHOOL; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.

Is this something that is really needed to be covered by the legislature when the economy is tanking around out ears?  They cannot find enough money to fund the needed programs the state has now, but they want to waste time and energy on crap like this.