What next for Georgia Republicans, school reform after OSD’s defeat?

The most ambitious attempt to improve failing schools that this state has seen in a long time, maybe ever, went down in flames on Election Day. Matches and gasoline were provided by the teachers unions.

The unions — mostly the National Education Association, but also the American Federation of Teachers, as well as their respective state affiliates — poured at least $5 million into the campaign to defeat the Opportunity School District. For perspective, that’s $50,000 for each of the 100 schools the OSD could have overseen at any given time, or the equivalent of one average teacher salary per potential OSD school.

It was a campaign out of all proportion to the proposal itself. It deserves a disproportionate response.

Georgia students attend a school choice rally in Atlanta, January 2014. (AJC/Kent D. Johnson)

Georgia students attend a school choice rally in Atlanta, January 2014. (AJC/Kent D. Johnson)

If any Georgia Republicans are wondering what lesson to take from the OSD’s lopsided defeat, it’s this: The education establishment and teachers unions are not on your side. They never were. And unless you accede to their demand for ever more money with ever fewer strings, they never will be.

Until now, Georgia Republicans have governed otherwise. They have limited the state’s school-choice programs despite overwhelming demand for them. They have refused to expand the tax-credit scholarship program, which runs out of credits in just a single day each year, constraining the number of children who can use it. The special-needs scholarship remains limited after state senators, many of them Republicans, on more than one occasion declined to back an expansion for students in foster and military families. The number of state charter schools remains very modest. A proposal to create an Education Savings Account, modeled after the ones in Arizona and Nevada, went nowhere.

With so many options for expanding school choice, one might think lawmakers representing a super-majority party that trumpets the need for such would manage to deliver something along those lines. Not so, because they labor under the delusion that turning their backs on Georgia’s students and families will earn them the support of the education establishment.

Five million bucks says they’re wrong about that.

If Republican legislators have the courage of their convictions, they won’t shrink back from this defeat. That’s exactly why the unions spent that $5 million, and even more to stop a similarly moderate charter-schools referendum in Massachusetts: not just to stop the current issue but to pre-empt whatever reformers might propose next time.

Will our Republican legislators give them what they want?

Or, instead, will they recognize part of the difficulty in selling the OSD was that there were “only” 68,000 students affected? That with so much doubt sown about the proposal — much of it on false premises — it was easy for voters to decide they didn’t want to risk the parade of horribles coming true when most of them didn’t know anyone who would be helped? That with President-elect Donald Trump pledging to allow school choice with federal dollars, there’s never been a better time to act on the state level?

Next time, aim higher. Next time, aim bigger. Next time, aim to deliver real freedom from the education monopoly.

Just make sure there is a next time.

Reader Comments 0

162 comments
AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

There was a telling moment in the middle of the Republican primaries, when a reporter asked Donald Trump to comment on charges that he really wasn’t a conservative. “It’s called the Republican Party,” he answered. “Not the conservative party.”



Understand that, and you’ll understand the path Trump took to victory — through Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan, not through the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) or K Street. It’s something nearly everyone on the left missed, from the academy to fake-news sites like the Washington Post. They painted him as an arch-reactionary, at best Barry Goldwater but more likely George Wallace. He’s neither of them, of course.



http://nypost.com/2016/11/21/trumps-gop-the-end-of-checklist-conservatism/



And with that, I offer my Thanksgiving Day prediction; soon enough it will no longer be called the Republican party either, it will be known as America's party. 

Caius
Caius

So Betsy DeVos get Education and the feds are going to take over education. Whatever happened to a smaller federal government?  When you elect a lifelong Democrat you get bigger government.


I have liked what I saw and heard of Trump until I read his comments on the feds taking over education. We have been fighting for 50 years to get the feds out of education.  Bill Bennett blew it when he did not eliminate the Department of Education in 1981 as ordered.


And while I am on the soap box, re the $1 trillion infrastructure spending.  Is that going to be "shovel ready" projects like in 2009? Why do we keep playing the same songs over and over?




AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

On the morning of the election there were 4 million dead people on U.S. voter rolls.



Although some states require some form of ID before voting, California, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, West Virginia, Wyoming, and Washington, D.C. all require no identification before voting.



http://www.redflagnews.com/headlines-2016/voter-registration-analysis-shows-more-than-3-million-non-citizens-illegally-voted

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

So we rush into an election where a small sample of government records reveals that thousands of aliens easily registered to vote.  Some of them were caught by happenstance and accident. Election officials and their pals in the mainstream media do all they can to hide the facts, and when they can’t hide them, they do all they can to explain them away. 


https://pjmedia.com/jchristianadams/2016/10/03/yes-virginia-aliens-are-registered-and-voting-and-in-pennsylvania-by-the-thousands/3/

lvg
lvg


"""""""""""Were there 3 million illegal votes from undocumented immigrants in this year’s presidential election? Well, that’s what some websites are saying.

"Report: 3 million votes in presidential election cast by illegal aliens," reads a headline on InfoWars, a conspiracy website ran by Alex Jones. The article has been shared via Facebook more than 48,000 times when we last looked.

Other websites also have touted this report, including MiloTheNewAmerican and FreedomDaily.

So is there any truth to it?

Well, we don’t know for absolute certain. But the report is actually a tweet, and the person who authored the tweet won’t explain how he arrived at his figure. If that isn’t reason enough to be skeptical, independent experts and historical analyses suggest it’s highly suspect.

In other words, don’t buy it.

http://www.politifact.com/punditfact/statements/2016/nov/18/blog-posting/no-3-million-undocumented-immigrants-did-not-vote-/


Only the uneducated and gullible buy this kind of garbage news.

Starik
Starik

@lvg Or true believers. Right and left wing zealots will believe anything that agrees with the world of :facts"  that they live in.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

WASHINGTON –  President-elect Donald Trump has selected a charter school advocate from Michigan to be education secretary.


Betsy DeVos becomes the second woman chosen to fill a spot in Trump's Cabinet. Earlier Wednesday, Trump named South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations earlier in the day.


"Charter school advocate." Any questions?



AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Watch the libs spin this one "Trump walks back promise for school choice by forcing everyone into charter schools."

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

@IReportYouWhine

1. At least he didn't pick Palin.

2. Clinton - 63,515,588; Trump - 61,917,320

3. Nice to see him packing his cabinet with fellow billionaires. I think it doesn't bode well for the common folk but it does for me!


AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@Eye wonder @IReportYouWhine


1. Palin is RNC chair.


2. Trump - 61,917,320; clinton 60,515,588 counting only citizens.


3. Business success may well translate into success for the country. We will see.

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

@IReportYouWhine @Eye wonder

Well, you were right about the new fuhrer, so I'll give you that. But Palin won't be RNC chair - or at least you don't want her to be. I'd be cool with it, I think - she sunk McCain, and she'll sink the GOP, all the while milking it for all it is worth.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@Eye wonder @IReportYouWhine Trump will build the durable majority by himself (when I say himself, that means his WH team.) Palin is for fundraising, House and Senate races. You ain't gonna like the next decade.

Caius
Caius

Nominating Nikki Haley for the UN job was a great move by Trump. Experience is lacking but she is smart and a quick learner as she proved as Governor.  She is a member of a minority 

in the US but will be a member of the majority in the UN, re skin color which has become so important once again.

If Trumps declines in 2020 Haley gets my initial nod.


lvg
lvg

Clinton’s popular vote lead surpasses two million.

With new votes tallied from New Jersey, Illinois, Maryland and California, Mrs. Clinton’s popular vote lead reached 2,017,563 overnight, prompting new calls for an audit of voting machines in battleground states.


NY Times today

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@lvg I'm good with that as long as, at the same time, we do an audit of Kalifornia voter registrations for illegals.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@lvg @IReportYouWhine You are not the arbiter of what is real and what is not. If illegals didn't vote then why was obozo encouraging them to do just that? Why were laws changed in blue states allowing illegals to vote? Can't you put two and two together?

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

Anyhow, Kyle, late to this, and not really in the mood to argue the topic, just wanted to wish you 'n yours a nice T-day.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

I never know nowadays what's gonna show up in my avatar.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@Visual_Cortex Tell me about it. For two weeks now, mine has been completely changed in account settings, new name, new avatar, but here I am, same old, same old.


I'm pretty sure that the ajc/dnc spyware is probably too deeply embedded.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

@IReportYouWhine @Visual_Cortex It's the Russians, haven't you bought the Democrat meme yet?


I want to change my avatar as well, but I will wait for you get yours done before I exert any wasted effort.  Obama is going to be the new Howard Dean of the opposition, whining and spewing over everything that is accomplished. 


My Avatar is going to be outdated.  He will be so busy with interviews and statements, he will no longer have the time or need  of riding his girl's bicycle in his mom jeans.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

Charles Krauthamer did a devastating analysis of how Obama had destroyed the Democrat party last night on Special Report.  He talked about the massive losses the party had suffered since 2008.  The most fascinating statistic he referred to was that there are about 5000 counties in the USA, and Hillary won 300 or so of those.  Large counties obviously, but I think that shows what the Dems have concluded, that they are the urban party limited to mostly to bi-coastal America.


Now if they select Keith Ellison, Muslim alt-left extremist to the DNC, and keep Nancy Pelosi as minority head in the House, things will continue to trend GOP. 

SGTGrit
SGTGrit

@RafeHollister 

The Dem's conclusion would work for them if they could get rid of the electoral college. The big city Democrat mayors defend their sanctuary cities for a purpose that has nothing to do with humanity towards their fellow man. The forward thinking of our founders was indeed a demonstration of their genius. 

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

I wonder if Haley's successor will be a racist.


sarc/off

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

Gov. Nikki Haley Accepts Trump Offer to Be Ambassador to United Nations: Source

Does the South Carolina governor choose their successor or is a special election held? I'm not worried about SC flipping into the dem gov column, just bracing myself for the next round of fake polls.

Annie
Annie

There was no substantive plan or evidence of a plan that would improve schools. Also, "failing schools" in many cases are not failing. One- third of the schools on that list were non-traditional schools that students do graduate students, yet take more than four years, thus, not counting as graduates. The other schools are deemed failing because 70% of the CCRPI Index that Georgia has is based on flawed tests. The Georgia Milestones were produced rapidly, administered with many variables, like technology glitches and poor quality of scorers. That is what teachers know. So, why should Georgia add yet another layer of bureaucracy?

Georgia has not illy funded the mechanisms already in place to offer help for students who are behind. That is what teachers know.

Starik
Starik

@Annie And lots of teachers don't know the subject they're teaching.

lvg
lvg

Well the Trumpsters just woke up to the fact that the Orange Clown has no intention of keeping many of his campaign promises like  prosecuting Hillary or building that wall and deporting millions of  illegals.Instead Trump has made it clear that he will be using his  office for personal gain and to enrich himself and his businesses.

And the electors will blindly vote for this shyster on Dec. 19.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@lvg Or he could be fooling the bozos into thinking he won't.


Just sayin....

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@RoadScholar @IReportYouWhine @lvg Let's just use climate change as an example. If you think that all the new drill rigs in the Atlantic Ocean, all the new cross country pipelines and all the new refineries are a sign that President Trump thinks that man causes climate change, we're good with that.

SGTGrit
SGTGrit

The left is having a hissy fit and it will get worse. For everyone including the butt hurt left have a very happy and safe Thanksgiving.

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

"We are not going to vote for anything that increases the national debt," said Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho. "Fiscal conservatives in the House are not going to support anything that is not paid for."


http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/11/22/trumps-tax-infrastructure-promises-face-pushback-from-gop-lawmakers.html


So where was this bozo the last 8 years? He finally grows a pair when his own party holds all the power? Or is he angling for some pork? You establishment types need to understand, we elected this man against your wishes, for his agenda, not yours.


Stand aside. It's time to let the men govern.

Eye wonder
Eye wonder

@IReportYouWhine

You were all so nice and well behaved in the immediate aftermath of the election. All kumbaya and we are one and let's come together and yadda yadda yadda.  I guess the post-election endorphins could only stem AndyUSA's anger for a couple of days?

AndyManUSA#45
AndyManUSA#45

@Eye wonder @IReportYouWhine Just because I'm using bigger words than you can understand, doesn't mean I'm angry, eyeball. This is an internal matter, we have a squish trying to assert authority that he does not possess. Yes, we may have to jack slap this suddenly Napoleonic wannabe but that's not a heinous action, it is simply to remind him that the people in Pennsylvania did not cast their votes for him.


If you are in search of anger, I suggest consulting a mirror. I've made note of the falsified 24/7 rampage you are on over yonder. It's almost as though you've lost it. Granted, you are not alone.