The Michigan Education Association announced this week that a public poll it funded reveals that Michigan residents agree with the union’s take on pending education reforms.
The EPIC/MRA survey results also show that respondents don’t think too much of Gov. Rick Snyder, state Republican lawmakers or their education agenda.
The MEA must think Michiganders are either really stupid or really gullible. Perhaps worse, the media fell for the ruse.
Consider the lead in to a question posed to those surveyed by the union earlier this month:
“Opponents of legislation to allow local public school districts to outsource teaching services say teachers hired by private companies will not have the experience of those who work for local public school districts, nor the commitment or loyalty to the district or students. Also, they will probably be paid much less and have inferior health insurance and other benefits. That will only force longtime teachers to leave the profession or seek employment elsewhere, with private companies keeping the leftover profits. Knowing this, do you favor or oppose legislation to allow local public school districts to outsource instructional teaching services? [IF FAVOR/OPPOSE, ASK] Would that be strongly or somewhat?”
It’s no wonder the majority answered in opposition. Public opinion surveys with such leading questions are known as push-polls, and are designed to solicit specific responses. College freshman learn that in Political Science 101.
What baffles us is why any self-respecting journalist would buy into this ridiculously tainted survey. Unfortunately, several did.
MLive.com writer Jeff T. Wattrick used the worthless data to come to the conclusion that “Michigan’s self-styled ‘education reformers’ have of late comported themselves in a way that suggests they’re at best out-of-touch, and at worst incompetent.”
Wattrick’s hit piece calls the MEA survey results “remarkable” but “not terribly surprising.” We’re unsure if his ill-conceived musings are supposed to be a news report or opinion piece. Other outlets, including the Macomb Daily and Fox47 television station, also paid lip service to the MEA’s self-serving poll. Their participation in the union’s misinformation campaign is appalling.
Here are a few figures to consider from the Michigan Department of Education’s analysis of college readiness among Michigan students, which presents some startling unbiased facts about the union’s influence in public schools.
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