Some inconvenient truths about ed funding.
It's about time It's About Time may refer to:
tr.v. ven·ti·lat·ed, ven·ti·lat·ing, ven·ti·lates
1. To admit fresh air into (a mine, for example) to replace stale or noxious air.
2. about education funding get cleared up. So let's start with three that are particularly relevant to the current legislative effort to define an adequate education by the court's July 1 deadline:
Myth #1: "If the Legislature doesn't define an adequate education, the Supreme Court will do it for them" The truth is that for as long as the Legislature and the governor continue doing the Claremont kowtow, the court, not the Legislature, will be the branch of government that ultimately sets education policy. This should come as no surprise because the court said just that in Claremont I.
Specifically, it said that it is the Legislature's task "in the first instance" to define adequacy. In plain English Plain English (sometimes known, more broadly, as plain language) is a communication style that focuses on considering the audience's needs when writing. It recommends avoiding unnecessary words and avoiding jargon, technical terms, and long and ambiguous sentences. , the court gave itself the power to rewrite some or all of the definition.
In response to Claremont I, the state Board of Education wrote a definition of an adequate education. In Claremont II, the court struck down that definition without ever giving any substantive reasons why the definition wasn't any good, and then decreed that the definition of an adequate education must be based on seven guidelines taken from a 1989 decision by the Supreme Court of Kentucky. The Legislature then dutifully du·ti·ful
1. Careful to fulfill obligations.
2. Expressing or filled with a sense of obligation.
du wrote a definition that parroted the Kentucky case. In Londonderry I, the court rejected that definition because it did not "allow for an objective determination of costs," and told the Legislature that they had until July 1 to write a proper definition or else.
The court's jurisprudence jurisprudence (jr'ĭsprd`əns), study of the nature and the origin and development of law. makes it clear that it considers any legislative definition of an adequate education merely a rough draft for the court to edit as it sees fit.
Myth #2: "Defining an adequate education will allow us to finally determine the cost, which will allow us to adequately fund the schools." What a crock crock - [American scatologism "crock of shit"] 1. An awkward feature or programming technique that ought to be made cleaner. For example, using small integers to represent error codes without the program interpreting them to the user (as in, for example, Unix "make(1)", which . One cannot look at the components of whatever we decide an adequate education is, and determine their respective costs. It is not like pricing a cheeseburger. With the cheeseburger, one can accurately figure the cost of the patty, the cheese, the bun, the lettuce, the ketchup and mustard, and what you'd need to pay someone to put it together. Try doing that with "proficient in calculus calculus, branch of mathematics that studies continuously changing quantities. The calculus is characterized by the use of infinite processes, involving passage to a limit—the notion of tending toward, or approaching, an ultimate value. ," "fluent in French" and "knows American history." It's impossible.
What's more, numerous other variables, besides funding, affect education performance. These include the competence of administrators, the quality of teachers, the talents and motivations of students and the involvement of parents.
If adequate funding is the real goal, then give parents vouchers that can be used at any school, private or public. That will get the dollars where they should go.
Myth #3: The purpose of the constitution's education clause was to make education an entitlement. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. the court, the purpose of the education clause of the New Hampshire Constitution The New Hampshire Constitution is the primary governing document of the State of New Hampshire. The constitution became effective June 2, 1784, when it replaced the state's constitution of 1776. The constitution is divided into two parts: Bill of Rights and Form of Government. was that students get career skills: "Mere competence in the basics--reading, writing, and arithmetic--is insufficient in the waning days of the twentieth century to insure that this State's public school students are fully integrated into the world around them. A broad exposure to the social, economic, scientific, technological, and political realities of today's society is essential for our students to compete, contribute and flourish in the twenty-first century."
While the founding generation was high on public education, it wasn't to prepare students to compete in a global economy against the English and the French. Rather, public education was seen as the best means to preserve the republican governments they had established. The founders believed that a virtuous and enlightened citizenry cit·i·zen·ry
n. pl. cit·i·zen·ries
Citizens considered as a group.
Noun 1. would be the best check against the tendencies of governments to become corrupt and tyrannical. The irony of the Claremont decisions, then, is that the court has engaged in the very sort of governmental overreaching Exploiting a situation through Fraud or Unconscionable conduct. that. the state's founders hoped that public education would thwart.
Ed Mosca is an attorney and former chairman of the Republican Party in Manchester.