Friday, February 06, 2009

Education and the Stimulus Bill

I'm not following the battle over the stimulus bill carefully enough, because it makes my head spin, but this is pissing me off! Apparently the Republicans want to cut most of the education funding out of the stimulus bill, including school construction.

What I want to know is where their kids go to school.

My kid goes to a fabulous public school with great teachers, a diverse student body, a solid curriculum, lots of cultural enrichment opportunities (organized by yours truly and my peeps), and a FOR SHIT building. The building is 50 years old and a disgrace. It leaks, it's boiling hot for almost three months of the school year, its systems are going...oh, I could go on, and plenty of people have.

Now, I've always taken the position that the school is great and the building doesn't matter that much. But then I heard that we might get a new school out of the stimulus bill. How many people does it take to build a school? A lot. Yes, I'm talking about jobs. How much more will students learn if they are not sweating to death in May, June, September, and part of October? More. Not enough that I would stake my life on a new school, but enough that if you're doing an economic stimulus bill that's going to pour billions of dollars into the economy, I'd sure as hell rather see it poured into my daughter's school than into more of these damn banks.

Oh god, I am just in a rage. Well, I'm in a rage anyway, but this seems like a damn good place to focus it!

Edited to add: I know I'm just going with the selfish take on it here, but have you ever been in inner-city schools? I have. A lot. You (and I'm talking to those of you who haven't, because those of you who have know what I'm talking about) can't imagine how grim some of them are. Rebuild those schools, create jobs, and give students a better place to learn? How can this not be a no-brainer??????


Lauren said...

They also don't want to help fund Pell Grants and Head Start? AH! Those programs fund the future of this country! I am selfish about these programs as well, as Pell Grants are how my husband and I have completed our degrees this year and our daughter was able to go to pre-k for free. Oh, they don't want taxpayers to be responsible for education. They don't want the federal government in the education system. Well, do we want competent college-educated adults running our country? Do we want our kids to do better in school and eventually go to college, so they can then keep this country going? It all fits.

Dawn said...

What are you? A commie pinko??? You want decent school buildings AND jobs? Next you'll be demanding decent healthcare for all!

Mary said...

They're gutting IDEA as well. DAMMIT! My son is autistic - the number of kids diagnosed with autism is only growing larger... and we're cutting that funding? That funding WOULD provide jobs, but I forgot - those jobs would be for a lot of women (because teachers and therapists are mostly women) and we can't have that!

Libby said...

OK, Obama's radio address today still refers to jobs in and for education in the compromise bill--did they make big cuts but keep some in? And one of the commenters on the piece you linked suggested that pulling education out might make it easier to fund separately. Is that even realistic? Am I a witless optimist to think it might be? (Probably.)

I, too, do really want federal funding for education. But I am also disgusted at local jurisdictions that have systematically cut property taxes, chipping away at school funding for years. (This may not be the case in Blue State, but it sure is here, and has been in CA for years.)

Elizabeth said...

Pell grants made it through ok. Head start is getting a billion over two years instead of 2. And there will be a good bit of $$ for school construction although not as much as originally proposed. It could have been a great bill, but it's going to be a huge step in the right direction.

K said...

I'm going to have to read up on what made it into the stimulus package today. My kids go to a school that sounds a lot like yours and although we are not up for a new building - I hope yours gets built!

My dream is an elementary school in which the gym and the cafeteria are two separate rooms. That would be amazing.

And the kids of the Republican Senators? Just guessing - but I think one can safely assume they go to private schools with nice new buildings. And don't eat lunch in the same room they just did gymnastics in.

SuzanneDeAZ said...

Well, you all got what you wanted a stimulsa bill which may lead to the NWO.