Public Education has been at risk under the 2 Wall Street Political Parties (Republican and Democrat) for some time. Here in NJ, Gov. Trump-Christie has been a leader in undermining public education. So, this week, when many are celebrating "School Choice Week" and Betsy DeVos is being considered for Education Secretary I think it is appropriate to instead declare this as a week to celebrate public schools!
LET'S DECLARE THIS WEEK AS PUBLIC SCHOOL WEEK
JANUARY 22-28, 2017
Over the past 7 years New Jersey Public Schools have suffered mightily as Governor Christie has
*used threatening language in reference to teacher’s unions (“You deserve a punch in the face”)
*made new demands for teacher contribution to medical plans that are not offset by salary raises.
*pushed for school choice and charter schools at the expense of public schools
*relaxed regulations on charter schools
*pushed for increased levels of standardized testing
*tied teacher evaluation to student performance
*annually underfunded local school districts
*pushed forth regulations that would open the door for unqualified teachers to be in front of our children
In sum, Governor Christie has created damaging levels of stress and fear for New Jersey public school teachers, parents and students.
During this long 7-year season with a governor bent on disturbing (if not destroying) public education many Democrats have seemed confused about their own feelings toward public education. Bill Gates’ donation of hundreds of millions of dollars to states and unions that would adopt Common Core hugely influenced this generation of Democratic lawmakers in the direction of agreeing with Republicans and believing in the myth that the public education system is failing.
It is time to celebrate public schools again. It is time to celebrate local control and time for a governor to find money in the budget to insure, at a minimum, the full funding of the School Funding Reform Act of 2008.
Let’s create a climate where public schools can thrive. With this in mind I join with BATs in claiming this week as Public School Celebration Week.
WHEREAS all children in New Jersey should have access to the highest-quality education possible; and,
WHEREAS New Jersey recognizes the important role that an effective education plays in preparing all students in New Jersey to be successful adults; and,
WHEREAS quality education is critically important to the economic vitality of New Jersey; and,
WHEREAS, public education not only helps to diversify our economy, but also enhances the vibrancy of our community; and,
WHEREAS New Jersey has thousands of high-quality teaching professionals who are committed to educating our children; and,
WHEREAS, Public School are celebrated across the state by over 1.5 million students, and millions of parents, educators, schools and organizations;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Seth Kaper-Dale (Gubernatorial Candidate for the Green Party) do hereby recognize January 22-28, 2017 as New Jersey Public School Week, and I call this observance to the attention of all of our citizens.