This past week when President Obama delivered the State of the Union address, I didn’t bother to listen to a speech filled with more unfulfilled promises just to get re-elected that would fall by the wayside in IMHO. I believed him once and had no intention of doing so again and fulfilling that typical adage about, “…. me twice shame on me.” While there have been a few positive things that have occurred in his Presidency, President Obama promised in his Inaugural speech that no more teachers would lose their jobs and this has been the furthest from the truth. I was somewhat surprised when education was such a large focus of the state of the union address and a hot topic of discussion the next day.
After Obama’s inaugural speech, I was initially thrilled! I had several colleagues and friends that were told their jobs were in jeopardy for the following school year and was caught up in the moment that finally everyone could relax that somehow budgets would be adjusted or reallocated and educational jobs would now be a priority. Instead the opposite happened. More and more public education jobs were cuts and it wasn’t limited to one locale like up north or California like it had been in the past.
This past summer Texas seemed to get the worst of it with Rick Perry. He wanted to make a run for Presidency but didn’t want any ‘blood on his hands’ to tarnish his run. Fortunately, he did that himself with the debates and his poor performance (karma is a real **tch, huh Gov. Perry!). Numerous teachers and educators lost their jobs in all capacities in public education this summer. School budgets were cut back so badly things were pushed back to a bare minimum. Why? Because Texas didn’t have the money? Nope, not at all. Texas did have the money in in a ‘Rainy Day Fund’ that they could have been released and prevented all of this from happening. When the Senate committees, Texas Education Agency, and Gov. Rick Perry was to meet to discuss the finances of Texas regarding the Rainy Day Fund guess who cowardly refused to show? You got it! I wrote a blog post about it back then.
Rick Perry did such a disservice to education and then to want to cut one of the three things that he actually could remember in one of the Presidential Debates, the Department of Education, it is no surprise that now over half of the Texas no longer wants him to even run for another term as governor after what he has done to public education and his performance while making his run for the presidency. What a complete embarrassment to Texas and detriment to Texas public schools!