Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The State of Education

Who said this?

Education has never been a national responsibility in our country, and school systems should not be operated by an agency in Washington.
No, it wasn't a conservative homeschooler from Michigan. I was only 15 when this was said - too entrenched in the system to speak out against. It was said by Al Shanker in 1978 during the debate over the creation of the Department of Education by President Jimmy Carter. Mr. Shanker was the head of the American Federation of Teachers.

(Continue reading here to find out who else supported his position. The names will surprise you.)

Andrew Coulson of FoxNews.com picks up Mr. Shanker's quote and suggest that Mr. Bush begins his speech tonight with the same words. Coulson explains,

President Bush should therefore issue a wake-up call to the American people, explaining the harm we have done by delegating our educational responsibilities to ever higher and more remote levels of government -- from marginalizing parents to shortchanging the poor.

Our nation was not built on a foundation of federal, or even state-level, intervention in schooling. It was founded on locally operated independent and semi-public schools that were directly responsible to the families they served.

Too bad President Bush won't be saying this tonight. It would be interesting to see if those who opposed the creation of the department in '78 would have the courage to applaud his remarks today. Some of them are still in Congress...and they are NOT conservative Republicans.

(Thanks to CJ for the Fox tip.)

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