Will Third Government School Bailout Improve Student Achievement?

Posted: Sep 12, 2011 12:01 AM


First there was the stimulus.  The $787 billion monstrosity was critical to Big Labor because it would save public school teaching jobs, among other unionized positions.

In fact, upon its passage, the News Journal reportedon Joe Biden’s appearance before the Delaware teachers’ union:  Citing about $105 billion that is coming to the U.S. Department of Education from the federal stimulus package, Biden said teachers will finally have the means to improve education.

“We’ve been given all the ammunition.  If we shoot and miss, if we squander the opportunity, tell me how long you think it’s going to take for another American president to go and ask for more dollars to correct the education system.”

“You’ve got a president and vice president absolutely committed to having all the tools you need to finally get it right in American public education.”

Then there was the “public education bailout.”  The White House told us the $23 billion bill – mere peanuts by comparison – would stave off a public school employee calamity.

Is there any proof that any of the money spent so far has done anything for student achievement?  I mean, even raised it one single, solitary point on a standardized test?

And now, on the eve of an election year – and fresh off an endorsement from the National Education Association – the White House has proposed spending another $35 billion to “rehire laid-off teachers.”  The White House estimates up to 285,000 teaching jobs could be saved.

Whether lay-offs were prudent due to declining enrollment is irrelevant, of course.

This is further proof our government schools are little more than a public works project for adults than places of learning for students.  Otherwise, why would the focus continuously be on “jobs” and not “student achievement?”