My Convertible Life

Friday, June 3, 2011

Guest Post: Budget Slaughter Isn't "Education Reform"

I love my husband all the time. But I especially love him when he writes a letter to the editor like this one, completely on his own and submitted today.

According to the state Constitution, North Carolina is required to provide the state’s children with "a sound basic education." While much work remains to fulfill that mandate, the Republican controlled legislature is destroying a half century of education progress and North Carolina’s public education system in one fell swoop.

In addition to cutting general funding and classroom support across the state, Republican legislators want to slaughter nationally-lauded programs such as More at Four, Teaching Fellows and Governor’s School. These cuts imperil students at an early age, take teachers out of the classroom and the education ecosystem over the long run, and weaken the creative and intellectual fabric of our states’ promising young leaders. Budget cuts also affect things like building maintenance – a broad term suddenly meaningful when there’s no air conditioning in your kid’s elementary school on a 95 degree day.

Education is the bedrock of our state’s future. It’s disingenuous to drastically cut funding and call it reform.

Real reform would focus on school finance models, teacher training and creating high performance cultures in schools. Instead while pound-foolish, tea-partying legislators are busy “taking back” their state, they are crushing public education and taking us back to 1950.
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