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Another Cover-up On Funding - Education

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June 09, 2008 – Comments (6)

The implication about this story where school are increasingly marketing to foreign students because they get more money per student are very serious.

It sets the school system up to be subsidized by other interests and what do you think happens when there is an economic down turn for where the students are coming from.  Now the school system is in dire straights for funding. 

It grossly hides the level of underfunding because the extra money isn't going to things a school can do without, schools have become dependent on this money to fund general programs.

The consequences could be compared to how municipalities are now struggling to make up the short fall from lost development fees and negative growth.

The thing is, with this you are playing with children's future and don't kid yourself that kids would recover.  You invite "Lord of the Flies" kind of changes in children's behaviour when you do not have a stable environment for them. 

And everyone's future is dependent on children's future.  They can become more productive and giving, or they can be costly.  

Recovering from the upheavel when this kind of thing falls apart would cost more than the school years involved. 

6 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On June 09, 2008 at 3:11 PM, hansthered0 (< 20) wrote:

I wonder what year it will be when we start to see a GOLBAL educational standard?

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#2) On June 10, 2008 at 3:19 AM, dwot (42.85) wrote:

A big part of education that is not recognized is socializing people.  Having gone over to Britain to teach, I have seen an education system completely in the gutter. 

I remember one kid that was truant most of the time, but one day "they" delivered him to class.  He thought it was great fun just flinging the items of my desk one at a time.  The school was in such crisis for the constant responding to those kinds of behaviour, there was very little support to go around.  I ended up spending the class moving what I could to the back room and then retrieving what had been thrown on the floor and the kids thought it was great fun. 

Another time they threw all the text books out the window.  Another teacher used to borrow them, so it wasn't until the next day that I realized they had been tossed out the window.  And the school response is get duct tape and tape them back together, ie, punish you with a several hour job for their behaviour. 

I ended up with a massive bruise that hurt to the touch for about 3 weeks and took about 2 months to heal complete by getting between a fight between two students.  Big kids could screaming, threatening and bullying little kids right in front of you and try to stop that and you get "f--k you" from them.

And the adult population is full of hard, ready to lunge at your throat kind of people having grown up through that kind of garbage.  It breeds difficult, hostile adults.  School has become one of the most dangerous and hards places for all the places kids go and it is because of gross underfunding and policy that leaves educators powerless.

Degree of sexual acting out behaviour that I saw in 11 and 12 year olds was amazing.  With what I saw it did not surprise me that a co-worker with a 10-year-old was refused as a foster parent because the only children they were looking to place were pedofiles on their siblings.

Mobs of kids think it is fun to torment seniors.  Funding problems in Britain's education system started about 30 years ago and now you can pick any social issue, and Britian is the post child of those problems in developed countries -- addictions, teen pregnancy, poor literacy and numeracy, drinking, smoking, welfare rates...

Declining quality of education = declining quality of socialization.

And to me, it isn't even the cost of dealing with the gross level of social problems, but the quality of life.  We see our education system declining, and well, in 30 years I will be a senior and I fear that we can't make the links of how important something is to our future.  And I am not talking about them growing up productive, but the degree to which society become a more defensive and threatening place to live. 

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#3) On June 10, 2008 at 9:04 AM, Nainara (< 20) wrote:

I can't speak for Canadian schools, as cited in the article, but with regard to the American school system, I tend to agree with Milton Friedman in that the system would greatly benefit from privatization (but not necessarily deregulation) of k-12 education. As capitalism has so succinctly taught us, competition and profit are excellent motivators for positive change if they can be properly channeled.

If education vouchers were to replace public schooling, it would provide incentive, not only for the teachers to excel, but also for parents and students to excel in order to be accepted into schools of greater prestige. Hong Kong, for example, has an excellent system where the most motivated and driven students study and compete at a ferocious level to claim seats in the most respected schools. These students are unshackled from the small minority of unmotivated and delinquent students who complete their compulsory education and are then free to enter the labor force.

I recognize that privatization of the k-12 education spectrum in the US is a pipe dream for a couple of reasons. First, the teachers unions are a powerful lobby with a vested interest in seeing the status quo undisturbed. Second, there is a perception that a move to privatize education would lead to massive inequality in the quality of education available to students on either side of the wealth divide. This argument has some merit, but I would argue that such a divide already exists and is very prevalent in our society.

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#4) On June 10, 2008 at 9:51 AM, dwot (42.85) wrote:

Then we can truly throw away the less capable.  You dealing with children, not a batch of blueberries. 

Private schools tend to only take the better students and when you consider how easy these students are in your classroom, they completely gouge the system and give you what Britian has. They take the kids that do not use their fair share of the funding and charge twice the price.

Indeed, as the public system became less funded, parents that could took their kids out of the public system.  The masses simply aren't going to be able to afford private school so you end up with chaos in the education system.

You'd think people would learn from looking at the disaster that health care has become -- pay all your life, if you can, and then get cut off when you need it because the best paid in health care are those that have a job to cut you off.  Health care per person is enormously higher, about 50% higher, and health outcomes are worse than Canada.  Good plan, the same kind of thing happens in education when you slaughter it.  Privatization means that way more goes into business men's pockets which means it doesn't go into the classroom.  That wastes education dollars.

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#5) On June 10, 2008 at 1:17 PM, Nainara (< 20) wrote:

Government is not an efficient provider of health care. Government is also not an efficient provider of education. In the form of vouchers, redeemable only by private institutions, less of the money directed toward education would be consumed, splurged, or thrown in directions that will fail to advance the educational metrics adopted by parents.

In some ways, the debate reminds me of the free market academics and the central planning academics in the 60s. From the command-economy side comes the humanitarian cry "but these are human lives you're dealing with!" Whereas the free market responds, "Yes, but you're settling for comfortable mediocracy!"

To some degree, both sides were correct. In the long-term however, the standard of living in free market economies greatly outpaced that of the centerally planned economies, even for the smallest, puniest of the constituent blueberries. I believe so too, shall it be for education.

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#6) On June 10, 2008 at 10:17 PM, dwot (42.85) wrote:

Ok, spending 50% more per person and having an increasing number of the population without health care is more efficient.  Just don't get so you test your beliefs.

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