How do we make sure that our classrooms are taught by effective teachers? Fire them. The government solution to fixing anything to do with its workforce is to throw more money at problems and employees, whether or not that money exists. Those of us who appreciate the hard truth of how the real world works know that this solution can only end in failure, debt, and tears.
On Wednesday night the president talked about budgets and choices. Mr. Obama should know all about the synergy between politics, budgets, and education. He brought his model for investment in our public school system from Illinois (see: Blighted Fiscal Policy Travels From Illinois to the Oval Office), where Obama style investing in education has forced taxpayers to spend so much on government employee pension benefits that within three years the state will be spending more on public pensions than schooling children.
Arne Duncan’s insistence on collaborating with teachers’ unions paid off big with a teachers strike in Chicago that made national headlines (see: Union Stance Ridicules Duncan’s Collaboration Efforts). Teachers postured for the press, shuffled through the streets, and appeared to enjoy the party atmosphere as classrooms stood empty and children stayed home. While thoughtless taxpayers might be tempted to point blameful fingers at striking teachers, or even accuse them of disgracing the profession and embarrassing the Obama administration after it bent over for unions, we probably don’t understand the stresses that elevate their profession far above the jobs performed by private sector dullards.
The Obama Executive Order list is growing. Proclaiming “We Can’t Wait,” the White House has become comfortable going around Congress with the excuse that gridlock is getting in the way of saving the economy. The new immunity program for illegals shows just how far this administration is willing to go to keep supporters happy. With a new school year getting underway and the election looming closer, is the next order going to require us to pay teacher salaries to placate unions?