Posted in Thoughts About Children

2019…When will our Children be that Priority?

When will educating all our children be a priority?

At the beginning of my teaching career in the early seventies… schools were finally integrated and and the funding of federal programs such as Head Start…were in place to provide the necessary resources to help with educating all children that were in need ….

I was so inspired and hopeful to be a part of this moment…We were giving our children opportunities they never had before….

However, progress slowed down in the nineties due to the enactment of “No Child Left Behind”… by then Florida Governor Jeb Bush…

This policy would continue through the millennium and into the present….

Even with the Obama administration, who too, was a proponent of privatization and the charter school movement…Monies that had once been allocated to our public schools were now being funneled back into private schools with our tax dollars;
Affecting many of the necessary resources and programs that had been in place, providing our children… a chance for that strong, public education….

We in turn began utilizing into the curriculum, thanks to Bill Gates and his Foundation… Core Curriculum, a developmentally inappropriate curriculum; which included the use of a sophisticated battery of standard testing…

Trying to bridge this learning gap associated to those children who struggle …

Now resulting in an inappropriate program with more objectives and standards for children to master…With fewer resources to meet those standards!

Then, just before President Obama left office, finally realizing our children in public schools deserved more opportunities to achieve success, he signed:

The Every Student Succeeds Act in December 2015 that governs the United States K–12 public education policy. This new law was to replace , the No Child Left Behind Act, …This was to be that wonderful opportunity for all children…

However, in 2016 the presidential election of Donald Trump…changed all that opportunity…Our hope of Hillary Clinton, a strong advocate for public schools lost this election…a crushing blow!
And in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s win, he being a strong supporter of privatization…then selected for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, someone who lacked experience and heart for our schools; being another strong proponent of privatization…

Which has now … resulted in Betsy DeVos’ 2020 budget proposal cuts to the Department of Education by 10%, and asking for no increases to the Individuals with Disabilities Act…

According to a recent article in The Hechinger Report:

School District Secessions Gather Speed, a New Report Shows by Emmanuel Felton

Between 2000 and 2016, sixty-three communities split off from their existing school districts to form new ones. In just the last two years, eleven more communities have followed. Most of the new districts are more affluent, and less racially diverse, than those they left behind. Another sixteen communities are actively exploring efforts to form their own school districts, according to the report.

This form of educational gerrymandering has proven to be a winning strategy to concentrate property tax dollars and hoard educational opportunities. And it leaves those districts that have been abandoned with fewer dollars to serve an even needier student body.

The National Urban League recently issued their 2018 report on Equity in Education… Most states are not meeting the guidelines enacted to ensure progress…

This presidency has cut more funding and resources … charter schools have continued taking those necessary tax dollars away…from our children… Programs have been cut….Teachers have had an extremely challenged just to keep up…In this last year alone, many teachers have had to strike for our children! We are seeing a critical teacher shortage, and non professionals are filling classrooms where there is a need…Even at my former school, Idylwild Elementary, two critical teaching positions, in the Exceptional Student Education are being filled by long term subs….

Another extremely dangerous concern affecting our children is safety in our schools, due to gun violence…

Arming teachers definitely is not a remedy…Right here in Florida...

House Bill 7093 and Senate Bill 7030: versions of a school safety act expansion to allow Florida teachers to be armed! Children should not be around violence… Teachers should be about providing knowledge and values to our children….and a love for learning!
Providing a safety resource teacher in all our schools…has been a remedy…However….Legislatures must pass stronger restrictions on gun ownership…And most importantly…. providing schools and communities…with funding and resources in mental health…

The future for our public schools is definitely in question….Our children must be a priority…The 2020 presidential election may be that determining factor…Will our Country put our children as that priority? Will they vote for a candidate that regards our children, teachers….and schools important?

One can only hope…

However…one thing is for sure… We must elect a president that will support, and fund the necessary programs and resources needed for our public schools… with enough tax dollars…to provide success for our children…

That being the Dream in “Every Student Succeeds Act of 2015….


Retired elementary public school teacher; all thirty-eight years in Florida... Now spending my time advocating for our children, and their right to strong public school education...With an appreciation for the arts and the beauty in each day…

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