Wednesday, March 12, 2008

California slashes school spending

1,836 expected teacher layoffs in Orange County alone. The news stems from a suspension of Prop 98 proposed in January which permits the state to spend less than the minimum amount guaranteed to schools next year. We're talking $4 billion dollars in cuts. That’s a four followed by nine zeros.

The state worries itself so much lately with its own deficit that the governator decides to bring the pain to the public schools to relieve its own stresses. It’s easy to see the results in the micro/immediate sense, but what of the macro/big-picture sense? We have invested human capital in the young students generated from these very schools. To take away their resources in school is to guarantee that fewer of them will succeed in school and life. It seems as though most school officials and parents agree that this suspension is a bad idea, but what power and what say do they have against big government? Groups and organizations form to protest against the suspension of Prop. 98 but the decision is ultimately in the hands of California Legislators. This is just the bureaucracy trying to please the people by skimming the budget as much as possible. They fail to see that the students who will be affected by this suspension will end up being the adults and leaders of California one day. If we force schools to spend less than they already do, there would be less teachers, desks, buses, outdated textbooks, but of course, more and more students.

What time period do we live in, 1900? This is definitely an issue we need to worry about.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I was going to post another story about the layoffs recently, but it seems Johnny beat me to it. This is a good issue that he brought up though, and not only because I was planning on bringing it up. Both of my parents were teachers and even now i can hear my mom's voice telling me " Sheldon if you become a math or English teach you will always have a job." Sadly this is no longer the case for many in the OC. I understand that running the state is comparable to running a big business, and when money tightens up you may have to pull on a deal or two simply to get by. However in February of 2000 The Govenator is quoted saying, "You know, nothing is more important than education, because nowhere are our stakes higher; our future depends on the quality of education of our children today."

That is a far cry from today where everything seems to be about money. Perhaps the voucher system pushing for a market system like Chubb and Moe suggested did not exceed what was currently in place in Milwaukee, but California is still toward the bottom of achievement in the Country and with the current system that was recently showing improvement taking drastic cuts that trend will reverse. I know for the final we are not supposed to over-emphasize money. However, this is a blog. So to put it in layman's terms "It's all about the Benjamins" There is an age old saying of 'you reap what you sow' right now the California government is sowing inadequately into our public school system and reaping just that inadequacy. We are not going to find a miracle formula to fix this without increased or sustained or simply what you promised us in the first place funding from the state. So with that said I will end with cliche number three golden state legislature... "SHOW ME THE MONEY!"

-Sheldon Sheehy ed175