Republican Assault on Public Education (1 Viewer)

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    MT15

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    This probably needs its own thread. It ties in with a lot of different R culture wars: Attacks on universities, attacks on CRT and “woke”. Classifying teachers and librarians as “groomers”. Pushing vouchers to send tax money to private, often religious, schools. Betsy DeVos was an advocate for all these policies that will weaken public education, and there are several billionaires who also want to dismantle public education. Public education may have its faults, but it is responsible for an amazing amount of upward mobility. Kids from poor areas can still get a college prep education in a public school.

    Vouchers (sometimes disguised as “school choice”) are a particular peeve of mine. Public money is diverted from poor schools to wealthy private schools, which aren’t required to offer accommodations for special needs or challenged students. Families with special needs kids are left out. Rural areas often suffer disproportionately because there are no private schools to attend, but their public schools still see the reduction in funding. Often the families who take advantage of the voucher money are upper class and the private schools simply raise tuition knowing the families are getting taxpayer money now.

    Greg Abbot is being particularly vile in this area. No surprise. Voters will have to make a statement about public education. If we want to halt the growing divide in this country between the “haves” and “have-nots”, we need to pay attention to public education.

     
    In North Carolina, the Republican legislature passed a voucher program with no income limit, no accountability and no requirement that children can’t already go to a private school. This plan will cost the state $4 billion over the next 10 years, money that could be going to fully fund our public schools.

    In Kentucky, legislators are trying to amend their constitution to enshrine their efforts to take taxpayer money from public schools and use it for private schools
     
    This is a long article, but just a reminder of how shirt republican policies are

    The Republican governor, Greg Abbott, announced last year that the state of Texas would take control over the Houston Independent school district in June 2023 and replace democratically-elected school board members with state-appointed ones. The move was criticized as part of Abbott’s agenda of expanding charter schools in Texas as one of his legislative priorities has been pushing a bill to expand vouchers for charter schools that failed to garner enough support to pass in 2023.
     


    Texas parents also keep voting more extreme right wing representatives into office. School choice has failed the last two legislative sessions, but it's almost assured to pass after next November's election when Texas parents vote their newly selected, more extreme right wing Republican representatives, that they elected elected to represent them during the primaries, into office.

    I'm just glad my kid if finishing high school this year. The school system (even in fairly liberal/moderate San Antonio) has gotten progressively worse over the last 4 years since the pandemic. I have a feeling it's about to go on a major slide in Christian authoritarianism over the next decade. It's what the people of this state continue to vote for and put into office.
     
    This is ongoing. Rs scream about giving money to poor people or people who are out of work, but don’t bat an eye about giving millions in welfare to well-off people to send their kids to religious schools.

     
    Guess this can go here
    =================

    Mike Hixenbaugh had been a journalist for years, reporting on a variety of topics ranging from education policy to healthcare, the military and other subjects, when one day he discovered a potential story literally in his front yard.

    It was the summer of 2020, and in response to a local Facebook thread spreading false information about antifa operating in his neighborhood, Hixenbaugh and his wife, who is Black, put up a Black Lives Matter lawn sign in their front yard.

    The response was prompt: “Every weekend for two months after my wife put the sign up, someone drove their four-wheeler into our yard and did donuts in it, churning up deep divots in the grass.”

    At that point, Hixenbaugh realized that something had been happening in his quiet Dallas suburb of Southlake, something that was probably very big – unraveling just what was afoot would be the journalistic work of years, and would ultimately result in his new book, They Came for the Schools.

    Looking at the wider phenomenon of conservative pushback against recent cultural movements meant to address things like systemic racism and the rights and inclusion of LGBTQ+ individuals, Hixenbaugh focuses on public schools as a flashpoint.

    Speaking with one Black Southlake mother, he reports that “in exchange for an elite public school education, her children had dealt with near-daily insults – some subtle, some less so – which she said they’d been conditioned to accept as a normal part of life.”

    The mother, he states, was extremely upset to watch “members of her community rise up in recent months to oppose efforts that she believed would make Carroll safer and more welcoming for children like hers”.

    Much of Hixenbaugh’s book focuses on giving voice to the very human toll of this backlash and trying to understand what would motivate people to come out so vigorously against educators and policies intended to make schools a safer place for all.

    “These are proxies for a much bigger clash in society and what America stands for and is,” he told me via interview. “Groups that have been lobbying for their world view for decades have hitched their wagon to this battle.”……..

    Trouble arose for Ramser when one student in particular, who has been assigned male at birth, asked Ramser to identify her as a girl and to go by her chosen name of “Ren”.

    Soon thereafter, Ramser was shocked to find that Ren had gone missing, choosing to run away from a very religious mother who for years had told Ren her identity was immoral, and who had rejected Ren when she tried to come out.

    Ren was eventually returned to her mother, who accused Ramser of attempting to indoctrinate her child with a book titled The Prince and the Dressmaker, a graphic novel that deals with cross-gender themes. After Ren’s mother told her story to a far-right newspaper, Ramser’s inbox began to fill up with hate-laden messages.

    “You have this beloved teacher, who is painted as perverted radical political actor,” Hixenbaugh told me. “It was just so far from the reality. When you apply these strategies to a school, you end up harming teachers and students who aren’t playing a political game.”

    Ren’s father, who lives in Oregon, was eventually granted custody of his daughter, who eventually began a gender transition via hormone replacement therapy, and according to reports is now living happily as a young woman.

    Meanwhile in Grapevine, the issue lives on, Ren’s mother becoming a folk-hero of the right; riding her story, far-right candidates had captured control of the school board and had introduced harsh policies meant to curb actions designed to make the school more welcoming for Black and queer students, as well as those from other marginalized groups……….




     
    The country, which has never been “United” is coming apart.

    This does not bode well for the future considering the changes to be faced on the horizon.
     
    The country, which has never been “United” is coming apart.

    This does not bode well for the future considering the changes to be faced on the horizon.

    The split is mainly generational.

    There are no shortage of young fascists, but their numbers aren't nearly enough to swing elections.

    We just have to wait out the boomers.
     
    The split is mainly generational.

    There are no shortage of young fascists, but their numbers aren't nearly enough to swing elections.

    We just have to wait out the boomers.
    Well, support for Biden is high among the over 65 set. The press isn’t talking about it much, but seniors are prepared to re-elect Biden. It’s been a quiet shift ever since Rs have started attacking women’s rights and social security and Medicare. Young progressives however I have zero confidence in. They elected Trump once and it looks like they are preparing to elect him again.
     
    The split is mainly generational.

    There are no shortage of young fascists, but their numbers aren't nearly enough to swing elections.

    We just have to wait out the boomers.
    Except people have been saying that for decades

    "This is an older generation problem that will die out when they do"
     
    Except people have been saying that for decades

    "This is an older generation problem that will die out when they do"
    Yes, exactly. When I was young we said the exact same thing. And here we are.
     
    Except people have been saying that for decades

    "This is an older generation problem that will die out when they do"

    Quite a bit did change when the boomers became the power generation though, compared to their parents.

    The boomers are just such a huge generation, that it took forever for the next generation to take over.

    GenX never really got to have significant influence over the politics because we are such a small generation.

    Millennials and Gen Z will be taking over for the boomers at some point, and there will be significant change, then decades of stagnation.
     
    girls can only wear dresses or skirts. are we in the 1800's?
    The Mississippi school’s dress code policy for the 2023-2024 school year states that students must adhere to the “dress attire consistent with their biological sex” and that boys must wear shorts or pants and girls must wear dresses or skirts.
    In practice, this policy has had harmful and humiliating consequences for transgender girls and gender-nonconforming cisgender girls alike, the complaint alleges.
     

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