Pell Grants For Kids = Vouchers In Disquise

This is the first I’ve heard of this, and so I’ve not had a chance to review the President’s proposal. However, it seems like he’s got another plan to divert public funds to parochial and private education. Watch as the separation of church and state shrinks again.

The fact is, parents who can afford to send their children to private schools don’t need the assistance. Moreover, there are a tremendous number of things broken with our public educational system. Can’t Bush find something in the system that needs a remedy and fix that instead of creating a new welfare system for the rich?

White House counselor Ed Gillespie, describing Bush’s plans for a new school initiative, said Monday afternoon that Bush “has some concerns about the declining number of faith-based and parochial schools in inner cities around the country and low-income neighborhoods.” Because of this, Gillespie said, Bush is ready to “urge Congress to enact a program he calls `Pell Grants for Kids.’ ”

The money would “provide alternatives for children now trapped in struggling public schools,” Gillespie told reporters.

Right. Ask any educator currently working as a teacher in a public school if No Child Left Behind has been good for America’s school children and you will discover how good Bush is at fixing what’s wrong with our public schools.

Incidentally, does any one else wonder why didn’t the Education Secretary make this announcement? Does the president always trot out lawyers because he has something to hide?

If you want to take a look at some more detail about my views on how to fix education, have a gander at this post, that post,,this other post, and how about searching my whole blog for the term education and see what comes up.

Just as an aside,do you think Bush would be in favor having a serious chunk of his “pell grants for kids” money going to some Islamic Private Education Organizations that start up? They would be faith-based, wouldn’t they?

7 Responses to “Pell Grants For Kids = Vouchers In Disquise”

  1. rube cretin Says:

    “Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it.” –Mark Twain-

  2. rube cretin Says:

    In youth we learn, in age we understand.

  3. manapp99 Says:

    You know for a bunch of “progressives” your side is short on ideas and long on criticism for how to deal with the failures of public education.
    You don’t like vouchers. You don’t like no child left behind, or accountability testing. In my area the schools are using TAP, a program with master teachers as mentors for other teachers and pay raises tied to performance. The teachers hate it.
    So where are are all the “progressive” ideas to fix the mess we have with government mandated and government administered public education? This is just like social security. Poo-poo the ideas to fix it but offer no alternative.
    Looks like Obama was right, the GOP is the only party that has come up with ideas.
    Progressive hardly fits a party that is all about the status quo and appeasing the special interest groups like the teachers union

  4. steve Says:

    I got a Pell Grant in college one year… Paid my taxes 20 times over that by now…

  5. Jersey McJones Says:

    Did it ever occur to the sleazy cons that the reason tere is a “declining number of faith-based and parochial schools” is because regular working families can’t afford to send their kids to them amymore? Do they really think some little “Pell grant for kids” is going to make a difference? Of course not. Good schools cost a lot of money. The sleazy cheap labor bastards in Washington have made it impossible for regular families to afford quality private or perochial educuation. The only thing that could come from this would be cheap “christian” schools, which have a long reputation for being sub-par at best.

    JMJ

  6. windspike Says:

    Dearest ManApp,

    Obviously, you didn’t read my post. I’ve got several links to my ideas about how to solve the societal problem that is public education. If you read the post, you would have not left the same comment. Ken over at common sense his log ago blog also posted several solutions to the educational problem. You just didn’t bother to dig deep enough, which is a symptom of the larger problem - Educational solutions are often perpetrated by people who have not had one lick of educational experience beyond their horrid memories and reflections of their own experiences in the classrooms of America from the wrong side of the desk. Simply because you were once a student doesn’t mean you are qualified to craft a solution to one of the most grave problems facing our nation today, our foundering public schools. Of course, the war in Iraq is one perfect example of how warped the priorities are of the W, Rove and Co. If we had simply taking 1/10 of the money we have spent on the “war” we could have boosted salaries for great teachers by 100% and we would actually have a stab at turning the tide - when teachers are paid at near of sub poverty levels in many school districts, you wonder why the schools are experiencing a problem? Here’s one solution, but I’m sure you don’t want to hear it - double or triple all teachers salaries and fire the bad ones. Only then will be attract more talent to the most important job on the planet outside of parent - teacher. Of course, our society is so warped it pays people 10K a swing to hit a baseball out of a ball park….and nearly 40K average per person to jail them. Need more assistance in finding a solution, poke about. the ideas are out there. Trouble is the people in charge would rather wage war than solve problems.

  7. manapp99 Says:

    O.K. Windspike. I read your links and will amend my statement from:

    “You know for a bunch of “progressive s” your side is short on ideas and long on criticism for how to deal with the failures of public education.

    To:

    You know for a bunch of “progressive s” your side is short on GOOD ideas and long on criticism for how to deal with the failures of public education.

    The old saw about spending more money on education is bunk. There is no link to school districts in states that spend more, or pay the teachers more, to better educated kids. Look at the cops and fire fighters. They do not make a lot of money yet when we have a fire they perform the same no matter the money. Someone doing a job doesn’t say ” gee, if only I was paid more I would do a better job. They just do the job to the best of their ability. Then bitch later about the pay. If we have teachers saying they would do a better job of teaching reading to a kid if they were paid better, then they should be fired. But wait, you can’t fire them because of the unions and tenure. One of your ideas was to fire all the bad teachers and give a lot more money to the good ones. One, the union will not let you fire a “bad” teacher or pay a good one any different than a mediocre one. Two, who would be the decider for the bad vs the good, the principle? Can you imagine the politics with that? Three, as I pointed out, they are trying to do merit raises here (on top of the mandated time of service raises) for the so called good teachers here (called TAP) and the teachers are whining like two year olds.

    Unless and until we get the unions (and the government) out of the equation, we are goint to have mediocre to bad education in a “one size fits all” system. The public education system is not keeping up with a changing world and is not putting out a quality product. We will not be able to compete in a world if we cannot train future generations to meet the challenge.
    It’s like saying that if we would pay workers at GM better they would build a better car. They can only build the car that the plans call for nothing more. The same with teachers. They are caught in a bad system and will only turn out the product that fits the mold.
    For instance, we are still pushing far too many kids to college when we have a critical shortage of skilled workers in the manufacturing and service industries. The public schools are making no adjustment to the world as it evolves.
    This is not progressive.
    It is time for the government to ease it’s grip on education or we will have to continue to outsource our manufacturing and insource our skilled tradesmen/women.
    A college educated public teacher is going to think the college route is the high road and the trades are for failures. The reality is that a plumber, electrician, electronics technician, machinist etc, can an does contribute to society in at least as meaningful way as a teacher and are in more demand. You think that teaching is more demanding either physically or mentally as building a house? Think again.
    What would be wrong with a middle class family taking little Johnny or Janie out of public school and taking the voucher to a trade school more suited to that kids ability?
    How about a kid that is not that good with math but plays a mean saxaphone? Why not a school that places emphasis on music? Why must we be relegated to a public shool if we do not have the extra money above the money we are already taxed to send our kids to the schools we think best suit the needs of our kids? If you are not wealthy, you cannot afford to give your kid the education you think they need, instead you have to give them the one mandated by the government.

    As far as the “mandatory public service for two years in the public education system” idea goes I don’t think I have heard of a worse idea. Look at what would happen when you put disgruntled people in our schools with our children. Most will not want to be there and will be just serving their sentence. The career teachers will have to babysit the new, young, unhappy “workers” more than the kids. The increase in costs for the dead weight would be a tremendous. How would you screen the incoming draftees for undesirable traits? Would you let those that may not be safe around kids out of the obligation? How much would you have to spend to train them only to loose them in two years? The system would get even further away from the objective of teaching to dealing with the constant turnover every year.

    Vouchers are not going to be the answer to every problem that plagues the public schools, but they offer a more fair and even field for parents who do not have a lot of money but care about the educational opportunites available to their kids.

    I am (only slightly) amazed that the unions have sold vouchers as a bad idea to the progressives that claim to have the working man and the less fortunate at heart.
    Vouchers will not help the rich anywhere near as much as it will the middle and lower economic classes.

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