They really are out to get public employees. By "they" I mean certain politicians and high-end businesspeople. The politicians would like to be free from pension and salary obligations. The businesspeople want to sell their wares -- and they want to re-create that perfect teacher they had, or they've seen. When you're a billionaire, you can pull lots of strings.
What will happen when education is privatized? Well, I like lists. Let's make one:
WHEN EDUCATION IS PRIVATIZED...
1. School teachers will no longer be given any protection from sudden dismissal. Parents, capricious supervisors, students, and politicians will decide who stays in the classroom, and who goes.
2. Teachers' salaries will be decided by the businesses running the schools. These businesses will be able to set any price for service that they please. This will save the taxpayers money. And if teachers balk at earning less, they can quit ... There will always be someone willing to take their place.
3. Student achievement will be tied to standardized tests. Teachers will spend most of their classroom time prepping kids for the tests. If the students don't do well on the tests, the teachers will be fired.
4. Schools will become platforms for the businesses that run them. If the owner of Microsoft (easy example) wants to, he will demand that every school have new Microsoft products every year. These can be bought with funds saved from teacher and support staff salaries.
5. Extraneous employees such as janitors and secretaries will be dismissed. Students and teachers, mostly teachers, will be responsible for keeping the school clean. Support staff will do their own secretarial work. This savings in salaries can also be used to buy more products from the business that owns the school.
6. The person holding a student accountable for behavior will be the parent. If the parent has no respect for education (having listened to governors describing teachers as lazy and lousy), the teacher will have no standing in any dispute with a student.
7. People who have spent decades in a profession will have no retirement funds upon which to draw. Teachers, whose salaries are already low, depend upon pensions to pay for their declining years. If these pension plans are un-funded, many existing teachers will not have any retirement income except social security. People who only work ten months a year aren't in any position to contribute hefty sums to a 401K.
8. When education is privatized, no one in his or her right mind will choose to be a teacher. Those not in their right minds will rush in for those jobs.
I am at a new crossroads, reader. I've got a front seat for the Assault on Public Education. Like it or not (and I don't like it), this is the battle I'm fighting.
I've fought other battles on the platform of this blog. Teaching has nothing to do with religion, thank goodness, but I'm afraid I'm going to have to set up my soap box here and talk about the education crisis.
If you're not interested in this topic, maybe you know some teachers who are. I ask you to invite them.
Please, all three of you loyal readers ... come along with me on this ride! I've always depended upon your support. Now I need it more than ever.