I watch a lot of Grey’s Anatomy. Naturally I’ll be the first person you’ll call when you need your appendix removed. I also love a good true crime show like SVU. I’m happy to handle all your legal needs. I can open a jar of Ragu and toss it over a package of Barilla. That’s totally the same as RPM Italian…right? Want to pay me instead?
Do these statements make sense?
Not even remotely, you say?
Then why do we continue to accept the guidance of Betsy Devos in areas concerning education? Because she once attended a school nearly 60 years ago? Because she had kids that went to school decades ago? When was the last time she was actually in a public school?
Let me make it clear: by we I mean the leaders of our country. Because I do not know any other person–either with or without children in the education system–who thinks she is qualified to do her job. Not one. If you happen to be one, I’ll be happy to debate you on this. I promise to use logical thinking. I’m not sure you can do the same since there is no logic to explain her position in the President’s cabinet.
I didn’t think I would ever get political on this blog even though I have some pretty strong political views. But I just cannot continue to listen to this woman without getting fired up. I had to say something. And when I saw a video earlier today of her testimony before Congress, I knew what my slice would be about.
Her most recent irresponsible talking points include proposing a budget that cuts funding for education by 10%…but really over 12% if you count higher education grants. I do. So should you. This makes no sense. The cost of…everything has gone up. So why would your proposed budget for literally the most important asset to our country go down?
Who is this woman working for? Not our educators. Certainly not our children. I think it’s clear where her loyalties lie. It is absolutely disgusting. We are already expecting schools to do so much more with so much less. We don’t just teach reading, writing, and arithmetic anymore. We teach acceptance, tolerance and perseverance. We teach life skills and manners. We teach how to be a good friend and to not bully. We self determination and self defense. The list goes on-and-on…I could fill pages. I won’t because I know that I am preaching to the choir here.
And not only does she cut funding…but she does it in a way that is so reprehensible that it makes my skin crawl. She’s not even hiding the fact anymore that she is a racist, out-of-touch bully picking on our most vulnerable of students. She chooses to cut funding for programs for students who are disabled, blind and low vision, deaf and hard of hearing, assistive technology users, and disabled athletes. This is going to affect schools with low socioeconomic status and racially/culturally diverse students the most. That’s dangerous. Literally. When you cut educational opportunities for students in those situations, you create the perfect opportunity for violence and the continuation of the cycle of poverty.
Devos didn’t choose to cut funds for her pet projects such as charter schools…which are for profit schools usually NOT held to federal standards or required to provide services for students with special needs. She chose to propose an increase of an additional $60 MILLION…that’s over 5 Special Olympics in case you were wondering. Also, by the way, her family has the potential to profit from them. Seems like a conflict of interest doesn’t it? Yea. To me, too. Schools are supplementing their budgets with taffy apple sales and box tops given their current levels of funding. And now there will be less. But please, let’s fund private schools…which are not mandated by law.
What can we do? I’ll tell you…GET. HER. OUT.
Put a couple of teachers in her place at half her salary. They still will be getting a raise. They will be able to make a balanced budget work. If there’s anyone who knows how to stretch a buck it is a teacher. But that would be silly to have someone who has worked in the school system running the department of education…you know…the department overseeing schools.
Betsy Devos is ignorant of the basic workings of the educational system. She is dangerous. She has declared war on schools. On teachers. And most importantly on OUR children. And the smile on her face when answering questions tells me she’s proud of her choices. I cannot excuse this. She is literally taking books out of children’s hands. She is limiting their potential to learn and therefore be the leaders of tomorrow. Without a proper education, the future of our entire country is at risk. Who will lead our nation? Children who have not had access to the same educational opportunities as our enemies? Does that sit well with you?
I want more for my children. I demand more for my children.
All this being said, do something good today if you can. Consider making a donation to the Special Olympics. If you cannot donate funds, consider donating your time or talents.
I am writing for the 2019 March Slice of Life Challenge