Back to School With Privatization

mpr2003-02cvrsml

This is an actual publication, BTW. I’m gonna read this 2008 issue just to discover what these two things might have in common:

Golf and University Privatization
MPR2008-01: Summer 2008
Published on June 17, 2008

Speaking of privatization, here’s another great education reform idea that is completely about kids and definitely not about racing to the bottom, privatization, or profit:

Michigan Republican Sen. Phil Pavlov, who chairs the state Senate’s education committee, is preparing legislation that would allow public school districts to hire teachers through private, for-profit companies. Privatizing the hiring process would presumably allow school districts to bypass compensation packages sought by teachers unions and let private companies compete for contracts with districts.
Pavlov didn’t respond to a request for comment on the teacher privatization plan. But Pavlov has publicly described his plan, which he said was still in the works, this way: “I look at it as offering options. If there is something out there that can offer school officials the same options at a lower cost, schools need to take a look at that. It needs to [be] part of the conversation on reform.”
Michigan Sen. Gretchen Whitmer, the state Senate minority leader, says she and the Democratic Caucus plan to fight Pavlov’s proposal if it is included in new education legislation. She describes teacher privatization as merely a continuation of Michigan Republicans’ education agenda. “Gov. [Rick] Snyder and Republicans have made no bones about it: they’re trying to dismantle public education in Michigan,” Whitmer says.

Ohio has been reforming schools much longer than Michigan. We’re well into the second decade of this totally new and innovative agenda here, so allow me to predict your future, Michigan. Reform means less funding for every existing public school, lower wages for local school employees and tests. Lots and lots of tests.

43 replies
  1. 1
    Zifnab says:

    Reform means less funding for every existing public school, lower wages for local school employees and tests. Lots and lots of tests.

    Really, I think the problem here is that teachers exist at all. Why not just hand out textbooks at the beginning of the school year, tests at the end of the school year, and call it an education? The hard workers will prosper. The slackers will fail. Free market victory for all.

    Then we can divert the rest of the education budget to consulting fees and administrative overhead, as nature intended.

  2. 2

    But Pavlov has publicly described his plan, which he said was still in the works, this way: “I look at it as offering options. If there is something out there that can offer school officials the same options at a lower cost, schools need to take a look at that. It needs to [be] part of the conversation on reform.”

    Because if there’s one thing I want, it’s my kid’s teacher to be worrying about how they’re going to pay their bills this month and eat; or working a second and third job to make ends meet.

    I’m sure that will keep their minds rightly focused on making sure my kids are learning.

    Though, I suppose, it would teach my children that we don’t value their education at all and having a revolving door of lower paid teachers go through the classroom will hopefully teach them that the life we’re training them for will be one in which they are simply cogs in a machine that are easily replaced.

  3. 3
    me says:

    OT: I hope someone has a recording of Bloomberg hitting the ceiling when he was told about this.

    The decision to install Mr. Zimroth, a partner in the New York office of Arnold & Porter, LLP, and a former corporation counsel and prosecutor in the Manhattan district attorney’s office, will leave the department under a degree of judicial control that is certain to shape the policing strategies under the next mayor.

    Ouch, so much for Ray Kelly for DHS.

  4. 4
    Kay says:

    @Zifnab:

    Really, I think the problem here is that teachers exist at all.

    They’re way ahead of you. Last Friday, In Chicago:

    Expanding virtual “schools,” which enriches ALEC’s online school corporate funders, such as K12 Inc. The Illinois Policy Institute — the State Policy Network affiliate in the state — will present on “digital education.” IPI employees had pushed a Virtual Charter School plan in Illinois, apparently in collaboration with ALEC member K12 Inc., the nation’s largest provider of online charter schools (which has become notorious for poor educational outcomes and high profit margins). Additionally, at least two “workshops” — which carry a $40,000 pricetag — will deal with online education: “Modeling State Funding Formulas, K-12 Online Course Providers” and “Statewide Full-Time Virtual Schools: The Case for Parent Choice vs. Local Control.”

  5. 5
    PeakVT says:

    Lower pay and fewer benefits sounds like a great way to attract better employees.

  6. 6

    @Zifnab: That’s not that far from what some folks want to do.

    I know of some teachers who were laid off in the last series of budget cuts who were hired by an online education company to moderate a ‘classroom’ of significantly more students for significantly less money.

  7. 7
    Roger Moore says:

    @PeakVT:

    Lower pay and fewer benefits sounds like a great way to attract better employees.

    You make it sound as if good employees are necessary. Everyone with a MBA knows that employees are a cost center, not a profit center, so the only important thing to do is to make them cheaper. If we can get rid of the cost of hiring those pesky teachers, we can increase profits by a hundred percent and manager salaries by a thousand percent.

  8. 8
    rikyrah says:

    thanks for bringing the scam to us, Kay.

  9. 9
    Alex S. says:

    Hmm… everyone likes cake, why not “Cake and Privatization”? That should sell well.

  10. 10
    Hunter Gathers says:

    I wonder if this whole ‘school reform’ scheme would disappear if we allowed schools to be segregated again. I have several members of my extended family drunkenly admit that they send their kids to charters or private schools because they don’t want their precious snowflakes sitting next to ‘those kids’ in class.

  11. 11
    c u n d gulag says:

    You’d be hard-pressed to find 3 things more stupid to privatize, than mail delivery, education, and the military.

    Fortunately, our country is much too smart to do somethin…

    LOL!!!
    ROFLMAO!!!!!

    Sorry, sometime I really crack myself up!

    Also four – prisons!

  12. 12
    PeakVT says:

    @Hunter Gathers: Bigots and privatizers probably work together in many places, but privatization advocates have their own fairly straightforward agenda – grift. We’re seeing privatization pushes in places that are pretty damn white because of that. The bigots originally were big on vouchers, which would enable them to send their kids to religious not-for-profit schools. I think that would still be their preference if they were asked.

  13. 13
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Zifnab:

    You’ve pretty much summed up the entire fucking thing.

    The important expenditures are for consluting fees and admin overhead, aka “profit” for the instigators of this scam.

  14. 14
    Kay says:

    @c u n d gulag:

    Also four – prisons!

    They get ’em coming and going with privatized prisons, because the food is so bad the inmates have to purchase concession items. They get paid twice, once by the state and again by the impoverished family of the prisoner. Captive market, you might say.

  15. 15

    @Kay: Not to mention they turn around and lobby legislatures for stiffer criminal penalties to ensure they remain a growth industry.

  16. 16
    Roger Moore says:

    @PeakVT:

    I think that would still be their preference if they were asked.

    I’m pretty sure their preference would be for segregated, religious public schools, which would not only give them the schools they want for their kids but also let them force that kind of school on other people’s kids. Unfortunately for them, the Supreme Court has said no, so they’re just going to demolish the public school system one brick at a time.

  17. 17
    dcdl says:

    Does anyone know if there is anything more current about K-12 online school? The New York Times article is from 2011. I have found something about cheating and K-12 in Florida, but am looking for something more like the New York Times article. I just want it to be more up to date. My school district just implemented the K-12 program last year and would like to have more info to give to people about it. I am not really finding anything through Google or Bing search engines. Thanks for any help or suggestions on where to look.

  18. 18
    Kay says:

    @dcdl:

    Two state attorney generals were after them, so I’ll look for that. Those are usually public records.

  19. 19
    MikeJ says:

    @Kay: I did read that phone calls are now going to be cheaper. Now the cap is going to be “only” .25/minute. Which is a huge improvement

    http://money.cnn.com/2013/08/0.....index.html

  20. 20
    jayjaybear says:

    No “Pavlov’s Dog…of an idea” jokes? I am disappoint in BJ…

  21. 21
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Kay:

    Captive market, you might say.

    Yes, you might say that.

    Obama needs to get his thin black ass in motion and get those FEMA camps set up for these Ferengi shits.

  22. 22
    Mike in NC says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    I wonder if this whole ‘school reform’ scheme would disappear if we allowed schools to be segregated again.

    Certainly the current NC legislature would get behind that idea. This year we only got a huge cut in public education spending across the board, and no raises for teachers. Next year they’ll need to get more creative. Maybe mandatory after-school bible study, banning the teaching of evolution in high school, dismantling unions, and so forth.

    After all, this year’s vaunted GOP ‘tax reform’ consisted of nothing but tax cuts and giveaways to the rich, and more taxes and service fees for everybody else.

  23. 23

    The child in that picture looks lonely and sad.

    Also, pull up your pants.

    :-)

  24. 24
    Emerald says:

    @Hunter Gathers:

    I wonder if this whole ‘school reform’ scheme would disappear if we allowed schools to be segregated again.

    Nah. They want the money. There are hundreds of billions involved, and they want it. They want it all.

    As an added bonus, they get a generation (or more!) of virtual slaves, which also is an extremely profitable business venture.

  25. 25
    HelpThe99ers says:

    @jayjaybear: Pavlov? That name rings a bell…

  26. 26

    OT BUT…. Activist TN judge changes child’s name from “Messiah” to “Martin,” says “Messiah” is…

    “… a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ…”

    The parents, who are divorcing, had gone before the judge so she could settle a dispute over the child’s last name. The judge took it upon herself to decide she had a problem with his first name, even though both parents thought it was fine.

    Judicial overreach!!!

  27. 27

    @dcdl:

    I’m seeing TV ads for online K-12 schools here in Nashville. It’s appalling. The people in the ads are mostly African American and they’re talking about how “this school served the special needs of my child …”

    Another form of resegregation. maybe? Just keep the black kids at hooome!

  28. 28

    @Southern Beale: Presumably, she followed up with a court order to change the name of all Latinos named Jesus to Josh.

  29. 29
    James E. Powell says:

    Reform means less funding for every existing public school, lower wages for local school employees and tests.

    I would be that a poll would find a great deal of support for the first two and a “why not?” for the third.

    How many Americans have children in school? Of those who do, how many care about any children other than their own? If one’s children are to “get ahead” somebody else’s children have to fall behind, no?

  30. 30
    mingo says:

    @jayjaybear:
    I suspect the guy is salivating at the prospect of getting himself a cut of the consulting fees…

  31. 31
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Zifnab:

    Why not just hand out textbooks at the beginning of the school year, tests at the end of the school year, and call it an education?

    Districts already basically do. Hire a bunch of ed techs to handle the attendance, and Bob’s your uncle. And it’s computers, not textbooks! 21st century!

  32. 32
    Violet says:

    @Zifnab:

    Really, I think the problem here is that teachers exist at all. Why not just hand out textbooks at the beginning of the school year, tests at the end of the school year, and call it an education? The hard workers will prosper. The slackers will fail. Free market victory for all.

    You’re right that teachers are the problem. Just like in any other industry or field, it’s humans that are expensive. Self-checkout at stores, robots making cars, kids teaching themselves–all of those trends mean fewer humans need to be hired and companies or schools save money.

  33. 33
    Kay says:

    @dcdl:

    This is state impact, which is pretty good:

    Just 16 percent of K12′s 3,200 students in kindergarten through 8th grade met state standards in math. The company is also facing questions about an email that suggests teachers should delete poor grades. StateImpact Florida has reported extensively on questions about K12′s operations in Florida, including questions about whether the company is using properly certified teachers.

    Jeb Bush is behind most of the activity on cybercharters. His lobby group failed in Maine, but only because of one really good reporter.

  34. 34
    Roger Moore says:

    @Southern Beale:
    Just wait until that judge has a hearing about a Latino named Jesus…

  35. 35
    scav says:

    Rent a cop in the front to protect the little dears and / or enforce discipline and kidlets at desks, doing the digital subsidized lesson plans. If Johnny went to McDonalds and saw the Big Macs ™ were $2.59 and large fries cost $1.47 and Johnny sold his home-made sandwich and carrots for $4, how much better off is little Johnny? Extra credit question. Is little Johnny a job creator?

  36. 36
    yellowdogupdater says:

    Enough to make me want to volunteer to register people to vote. That is really the only way forward imho.

  37. 37
    slag says:

    This is an actual publication, BTW.

    Jesus. Well, at least they’re clear about their intentions.

  38. 38
    Tone In DC says:

    The grift is on. And on and on.
    If it ain’t nailed down, these bastards want a cut of it (or the whole damn thing). I was relieved in 2005 when AARP et al stopped Social Security privatization. These bastards just keep coming, though.

    Kay, thanks for this.

  39. 39
    👾 Martin says:

    @Southern Beale:

    “… a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ…”

    Hmm. The 10s of thousands of parents across the spanish speaking world that name their kid Jesus would disagree with that. As would Judge Reinhold, Queen Latifah, Major Garrett, and Sergeant Shriver.

  40. 40

    @Hunter Gathers:
    Well, here’s the thing. The ‘school reform’ craze is being run as a grift by the greedy and corrupt. However, a con has to have marks. It’s able to get anywhere because the racial and religious existential crisis going on in America has created an enormous mass of angry assholes who will vote for anything that fucks over the other guy, or even themselves. The core of THAT group have hated public education for at least 50 years, and would support any attack on it anyway.

  41. 41
    dcdl says:

    @Kay: Thanks for all the links and info. Just every time I searched K-12 and various versions the search would just pop up info about the school from the k12 website. I did a lot of page searches. Now I have some info I can expand my search and possibly present or at least ask pointed questions during the district meetings and PTC meetings.

  42. 42
    dcdl says:

    @Kay: Thanks for the info on state attorney’s. I was able to find a good link State Impact: NPR; Florida that had links to various other articles about K-12.

  43. 43
    mclaren says:

    Presumably the for-profit education companies showed him some money and rang a bell, and he salivated on cue.

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