troubling that so much money came into his campaign from people he can’t represent,
or make that, he shouldn’t represent.
I find it troubling that so much outside money is
being funneled into the Smith-Juarez campaign from outside the city especially since
so little of the other money she raised came from public school parents and
teachers inside the city. It makes me wonder who she is really going to represent.
Mrs. Ward wrote a letter to the Times Union expressing outrage about the Jenkins (3) and Fischer (7) school board campaigns. Coincidently enough she also mentioned she is supporting the Ashley Smith- Juarez (3) and the John Heymnn (7) campaigns. Um, yeah, hmm.
You will have to forgive me if I find this a little incongruent. For the most part the same people who are supporting Fischer, charter school groups, politician that don’t live here and other outside interests are also supporting Smith-Juarez. Furthermore the same people that are supporting Jenkins, local parents and businesses and the ones supporting Heymann. Mrs. Ward is all across the board. She is basically saying I support Obama and I’ll go ahead and support Romney too. Rich people really are different.
Mrs. Ward also comes off as a hypocrite too. The mail out supporting Jenkins that Ward complains about came out months ago. Shouldn’t she have expressed her outrage then? But worse the mail out supporting Jenkins was correct. Make no doubt about it Gary Chartrand and outside interests are trying to buy a school board seat. Look at Mrs. Smith-Juarez’s donors list and if you had any doubts they will be quelled.
Visiting the Michael and Kim Ward foundation web-site it looks like she has a good and noble mission but rather than interjecting herself into politics, she should probably concentrate on that.
I am a teacher and have been on a train; maybe I should run CSX, where Mr. Fischer works. Or wait I have been to the doctor, maybe I could start performing surgeries. Instead of running for school board, maybe I should have run to be a judge, why not; I have seen a lot of Law and Order.
Education is the one field that people who have nothing or very little to do with think to themselves, hey I can run that or do that and it is partly because of this mindset we are in trouble.
The truth is we need people like Mr. Fischer to be involved, to donate their time and to give ideas but just like we wouldn’t want me running a hospital we don’t want people like Mr. Fischer running our schools.
I love teaching. Or, I did love teaching. I loved teaching when my job was to teach. Now, I don’t love teaching, because my job is no longer teaching.
A decade after Florida voters decided they wanted a centralized Board of Governors to oversee the state’s public universities, Gov. Rick Scott’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on Higher Education is poised to recommend to a recalcitrant Legislature to finally let it happen. But the task force’s acquiescence on the other major issue facing higher education — diminishing state funding — is disappointing. The state can’t keep expecting students to pay for most of the costs of a State University System vital to the entire state.
The governor created the task force earlier this year after vetoing a plan that would have allowed the University of Florida and Florida State University the autonomy to raise their tuitions as long as they met certain accountability measures. The universities’ proposal was an understandable, if flawed, reaction to broken promises in Tallahassee, where the State University System has seen its spending slashed, including $300 million just this year. Even though state universities have raised tuition significantly in recent years, it’s not been enough. Students in Florida now pay more than ever for a university education, but due to cuts in state spending less money is being spent to educate them.
Central to the task force’s recommendations, which are expected to be delivered next month, would be for the Legislature to turn over budgeting authority to the Board of Governors in exchange for implementing performance-based funding mechanisms for each of the state’s 12 universities. Such measures, for example, would include quality of research, academic rankings, and whether enough students were graduating into high-wage, high-skill, high-demand jobs.
It makes sense to have a single governing board shaping the missions and distinct identities of universities. And coordination from one governing board — as well as the power of the purse — would help build a unified system that minimizes duplication and avoids political travesties such as the unneeded Florida Polytechnic in Lakeland.
But when it comes to funding, the task force disappointed. The group calls for universities to have tuition matched to their national peers, but it gives the Legislature a pass. The working draft says, “In the absence of state support, the Legislature and Board of Governors, working together, should evaluate tuition strategies to compensate for state funding.”
That’s no way to fund a higher education system that Republican leaders say can help diversify the state’s economy. Scott, incoming House Speaker Will Weatherford and incoming Senate President Don Gaetz need to look past short-term budget issues to make a long-term commitment to building a system Florida can be proud of. Universities are not simply vocational schools churning out graduates to meet the needs of the marketplace, and a bachelor’s degree is not merely a meal ticket. A well-educated citizenry is a benefit both to the state and to the individual. Expecting both parties to pay their share is the smarter approach.