Thursday, July 24, 2014

Fears of public school parents becoming realized

One year ago we pulled our daughter out of the Metro public school she was attending in North Nashville and enrolled her in a parochial school. Last August I explained elsewhere in greater detail than parents tend to do openly why we pulled away from MNPS. That statement is not entirely correct. Metro Nashville Public Schools pulled away from us.

The longer I was a public school parent in Nashville, the more I realized that the system is rigged to funnel money away from traditional schools and toward education reform gimmicks and band-aids like charter schools. We knew that the more the school district embraced privatization of public education, the more public money would flow away from public education.

A year later our fears seem confirmed by MNPS board member, Amy Frogge, who tweeted news of a disturbing trend:

We left MNPS because we were afraid that resources were going to be funneled away from public schools for reformers' experiments in privatized education. I wish we had been wrong on this one, because we miss public schools. But there is no way we were going to stay in a house that was falling down around us.

Priorities in this city are messed up.

UPDATE: Jump to more background of our decision to leave Metro Schools after 4 years of soldiering through fray.


  1. When the mayor of the city promotes charters that destroy public schools, what do you expect? His kids never went to a Nashville Public School so why should he care. Now that his friend Jeremy Kane is running for mayor, the plan is in place to privatize the whole district. They did it in New Orleans and the schools suck.

    Perhaps it's not so much the schools that influence the kids, but the community where they come from. When you continue to pour money only into the parts of the city where childless young adults live, existing neighborhoods with kids suffer. The kids in these neighborhoods get the message. Your city doesn't care about you. They will bring charters in to save a few, but most will continue to suffer especially now that funds to zone schools are continuing to be cut. If the charter funded candidates are elected to the school board, it will only get worse. The middle class will get squeezed even more. Those who pay no property tax don't care at all. It will not matter much to them that charters will be brought in to wealthy neighborhoods. Wealthy families will be allowed to attend private charter schools without paying tuition.

    Charters have not shown any more success than zone schools. Remember charters can make their own rules, require parent involvement, and exclude students with attendance or discipline problems. If zone schools had that power, they would have much higher test scores.

    It's not the teachers or the schools folks- it's the kids, and the kids are simply a reflection of their parents and the community where they live. Maybe our city is trying to fix the wrong thing.

  2. How IS ed reform working out for public schools in Tennessee?

    Does anyone care? Why are we paying people who are opposed to public schools to run public schools?

  3. Posted on blog


    Lloyd Lofthouse
    May 6, 2014
    4:02 pm
    His analogy to the Model T is flawed. The public schools in the United States are nothing like they were in 1900. In fact, they are in danger of evolving into something that causes fear in the top 1% explaining why Bill Gates, the Koch brothers, the Walton family and Hedge Fund billionaires (among others) fear what will happen to their power if the majority of the people end up with the ability to think critically and solve complex problems. If that happens, how will the 1% fool enough people to support agendas designed to grow the power and wealth of the top 1%?

    In 1900 about 6% of 17/18 year olds graduated from high school and they came from the top 1% of the socioeconomic pyramid. The other 94% were locked out. The schools back then were also modeled after the Prussian method of teaching—rigid rote learning and discipline for the children of the top 1% who were expected to take over industrial empires when their parents left this mortal coil—keeping the power in the hands of those same families.

    In 1900, half of the workers in manufacturing were children as young as seven. Adults and teens were considered too difficult to manage and too expensive because they expected to get paid more and demanded more rights and benefits.

    And in 1900, teaching did not focus on innovative ways of critical thinking and problem solving.

    The fake education reformers want people to think teachers are stuck in the late 19th or early 20th centuries, but teachers are part of the evolution of education that will set most of the people free to think for themselves instead of having the top 1% do their thinking for them.

    But teaching to Common Core Standards tests that can get one fired if students don’t score high enough, robs teachers of being innovative and stops them on the road of education’s evolution. Instead, the draconian Common Core standards testing regime throws us back into the Prussian model of of education that is in the interested of those in power as inferred in the video included with this comment. The Common Core standards demand that kids stay on track on the Prussian assembly line of education or else teachers will get fired, schools closed and kids will not be allowed to graduate from high school.

    The end result: an end to the evolution of education that threatens the current power structure.

  4. Charter schools are..."An unregulated industry sold to the poor for benefit of elite is going to produce a national catastrophe."

  5. Charter schools are clearly designed to loot public school budgets of what little they have. The parents who have no choice but public schools for their children are those least equipped to fight for a good education for their children. The people who are equipped to fight that battle no longer have children in the public schools. It's a sad death spiral, and we desperately need people like Amy Frogge who will vigorously oppose the outsourcing of public schools to for-profit charter companies more interested in making a buck than educating children. But we also need school systems capable of educating children. Perhaps we can recruit some Catholic school administrators to help out? Anon-3