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Monday, April 19, 2010

Cost of an Education

Okay there are two parts to this - totally unrelated - so bear with me ... first the pure cost aspect.
There is a new call for the dissovement of the Department of Education on the national level.

This will save us almost $100Billion! The Department of Education costs us $94BILLION a year -- 81% of the spending of the department goes back to the states. Its sounds good ACCEPT that means that part of the cost is from sending the money to Washington in the first place ... a portion of it goes to paying for the staff and running of the Dept. itself.

Getting rid of it would mean that the money collected by each state would STAY in each state and the state would get 100% of the money collected under the guise of 'education'.

The ED (Education Department, DOE stands for a different Dept agency) has only been around since 1979 under the Carter Administration ... well kind of - see it was originally created in 1867 but made an Office (demotion) in 1868 ... then it became part of the Department of Health,Education,&Welfare ....

And this is nothing new, the calling for its demotion yet again -- President Reagan called for it (remember him? he got the economy back on track in the 80's) ... but the Democratic House wouldn't let him - otherwise he had the Senate behind him on it.

And for those that poo-poo GW ... he increased the budget of the DofED by almost 70% btw 2002-2004! And before him the Dept had actually very little to do with the actual education process - it was his "No Child Left Behind" initative that really gave the ED something to do.

It also helps send funds for Pell Grants/community education/re-education for people who become handicapped/ESL ... I mean there is a LOT that they do that most people don't even realize.

BUT does it need to be a department all its own -- I think that is the question to ask.
Here's the general breakdown:
81% of funds get sent back to the states
17% subsidize individuals & businesses
2% Departmental Purchases
>1% Employee pay

I don't know -- I'm kind of on the fence on this one. On one hand I'm all for all the educational opportunites that the department has developed that normally would not have been done in some states (like ESL, very few states would have done it) ... but on the other hand -- I can't see spending all this money on a department that didn't have much to do until 8 yrs ago.

It just doesn't make sense.
The second story ---

Ok - have to say I can't support this one.

In Temple, TX they are allowing paddling in schools.

Yes you read that correctly -- they are allowing children to be swatted with a paddle when they misbehave ... aka Corporal Punishment.

Although the district in question has only paddled one child in the High School, they report an improvement of behavior ... by the sounds of it, it was an almost insteadanious change (my guess is they just don't know about the stuff going on)

Here's my issue ---

The schools should not be allowed to do anything to a child that a parent isn't allowed to do.

Where a parent to take a paddle ... a belt ... a wooden spoon ... to their child's behind -- they would be accused of child abuse!!!

You know that if some kid came into the school and said that their mom or dad took a spoon or paddle to their behind that the Dept. of Child Services would be called and the police would be on their doorstep!!!!

No I'm sorry --- this is wrong.

I understand the problems -- I grew up going to inner-city schools ... my first two kids went to an inner-city school ... they had a kid throw a chair at a teacher and it went thru the window in the science room one day .... and I USED to feel that the teachers SHOULD have the right to discipline the kids at the time the issue happens -- as it would be at home ... even if a parent sends the kid to their room while the parent calms down, it is still taking care of it at the time.

But I think the biggest problem with kids these days is that the parents are afraid to do anything. really.

It used to be if you got sent to the office you dreaded that call to your folks -- it generally meant that either you were going to go home with a parent or your parent was going to get called into the school ... and you knew that when you got home, you were in TROUBLE.

Now-a-days -- either you can't find a parent, or they are too afraid to punish their kids because the kids are taught very early that if a parent does something they don't like they can cry 'child abuse' and the parents are under the microscope -- of course most time they dont realize the follow up to it all ... the one where they could be taken out of the house - there was a rise in these false reports in the 80's & 90's, usually during divorce cases but there were other cases too ... like the kid who called because his mom wouldn't let him go out after dark - false imprisonment he tried to claim - but it turned out she was simply keeping him in from running with the local gang, and the 'imprisonment' consisted in locking the deadbolt and removing the key (not safe, but at the time not illegal).

Punishment in schools?

within reason -- paddling is not that.

I just don't want to return to the slapping with rulers ... whacking in the heads ... or locking in the cloak rooms ... of the past.

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