Monday, January 21, 2008

School Friendly Legislation - why are Progessives opposed?

Representative Bill Kramer has a good summary of the virtual school mess; how we got here, what are the issues and where we might go.

Over here we have a group called 'One Wisconsin Now' - a progressive, non-partisan (hah) advocacy organization getting all partisan and worked up against AB 697, but in favor of SB 396.

Representatives of virtual schools and the supporting industry behind them have been bucking the Lehman proposal

That supporting industry includes, yes, representatives of K-12 - it's not illegal for private interests to lobby the government. It also includes 3,000 familes directly affected by the legislation, the 1100 people who rallied at their state capital in support of their schools, and their friends and relations.

You know - the people that One Wisconsin Now is representing.

At any rate the piece is not worth more quoting - go read it if you want to see a raft of half-lies and smear. Virtual schools - in my experience - have just as much accountability as a bricks and mortar school - hell, they're being run by the same district. The legislation does not fork over money - or at least not any more than is being forked over now.

We may not always like taxes but they're going to be collected and disbursed so we might as well have an efficient school system over one that is not-so-efficient.

I'm honestly puzzled - why is an organization devoted to the common good opposed to this? Their arguments don't make sense in terms of 'what is best'.

Hint: AB 697 is the one that corrects existing state law, correcting the problems that caused the court to rule in favor of the schools and for the teacher's union. We here at Space For Commerce* refer to this as the Good Bill.

SB 396 would cut school funding in half, empower the crats at DPI to offer online courses and generally give the state more power. We refer to this as the Evil Bill.

**We're partisan and biased, but we're nice about it.
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