Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Negative Campaigning

Even the Jindal/big business endorsed candidate for BESE District 7 is objecting to the outrageous attacks (Click to view the Advocate story) by the Jindal/Grigsby PAC against BESE incumbent Dale Bayard. The Governor's friends want to make sure that he and big business have total control over education policy and they don't care how they do it.  They are so determined to remove all dissenting voices to the big business takeover of public education that their negative campaigning has gotten outrageous. Their chosen replacement to Bayard will be expected to do their bidding without question. Just as was done in the case of Tammie McDaniel who had the nerve to occasionally disagree with (non-educator) State Superintendent Pastorek on some critical issues.

The big money pushing the BESE takeover will not tolerate dissenting voices especially if they come from professional educators. In this "brave new world" of education reform anyone who is a professional educator is automatically considered to be an obstacle to "reform".  On the other hand, anyone who comes from a business background or graduated from an Ivy League college with a non-education degree is considered far superior to education graduates for staffing our schools. No matter that the TFA recruits generally only intend to do this bit of public service for two or less years; they are considered experts with only 6 weeks training. No matter that many of the Broad Foundation graduates of the school administrators' academy have no understanding of classroom issues, they are considered superior administrators to those who have toiled in the classroom for years. Their only criteria is:  Did the teacher raise student test scores? This is like having an accountant telling the doctors how do do surgery. If the Governor and his friends are successful, public education in Louisiana will be run by amateurs who believe they have all the answers without ever having worked in the classroom.

I am urging all educators and education support personnel to get out and vote for true public education advocates to BESE seats this Saturday. Ask your friends and relatives to also support your recommendations for BESE. This is the only way we can combat the influence of big money over our profession. Please ask all voters to support the condidates that have been recommended by the Coalition for Louisiana Public Education. They are the following:

Update: For BESE the Coalition has endorsed: District 1 - Sharon Hewitt; District 2 - Louella Givens; District 3 - Lottie Beebe; District 5 - Keith Guice; District 6 - Donald Songy; District 7 - Dale Bayard; and dual endorsements in District 8 - Jim Guillory and Domoine Rutledge. Also the Coalition supports District 4 - Walter Lee - who drew no opposition. These candidates fully support public education and the real transformation of Louisiana public schools.