Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Free Market in Education?

Debe Terhar, the President of the Ohio School Board, has received a lot of negative attention for her recent posting on her Facebook page when she compared President Obama to Hitler (see ColumbusDispatch).  Plunderbund noted that Debe Terhar is not the first appointee of Gov. Kasich's to receive unwanted attention for his/her beliefs/actions.

Debe Terhar has been active with the Tea Party in Ohio and is pro-charter school. That, unfortunately, shows her bias.

Xavier Magazine:
....The Business of Education | “We need to make sure that we are child-centered,” Terhar says. “That’s my goal—to graduate as many children as we can, and to graduate them with knowledge and skills that will set them up for life.” Terhar is a proponent of the voucher system, and believes a teacher’s pay should be based on performance. “In business, if you do a good job, you get paid for it,” she says. “We need to look at it like a business. We’re in the business of education.” Here, Terhar invokes her Tea Party roots. “The free-market system will determine who does a good job and who doesn’t,” she says.....

Despite the fact that charter schools produce lower achievement scores, Debe Terhar and her ilk want to take money from our public schools to fund charter schools owned by corporations. The free market is not a solution for everything. Perhaps if the government funded public education as we do wars and tax cuts to oil companies, our schools would produce students ready for the 21st century challenges. Ohio cannot continue to cut funds to our schools and expect that students will be prepared for the technological jobs of the future.

The mandates put out by Kasich, the Republican-controlled General Assembly, and far right members of the Ohio School Board are not based on the reality of the typical classroom or school.  Teaching children should not involve the free market. Teaching and education must be rooted in the basics of child development, educational principals, and the needs of children----not the needs of a corporation to make a profit.