Saturday, November 11, 2006


Am I a meanie for opposing early-childhood education programs as part of the mission of our public schools?

I don't think so, but a Go Big Ed reader has suggested so, in anonymous comments posted on this blog on my stories revealing the pointlessness of Head Start, the model for Amendment 5, the government preschool addition to the Nebraska constitution that voters unfortunately put in place on Tuesday.

Here's a good briefing on the politics of Head Start, which swept through Nebraska like a hot knife through butter, and got Amendment 5 in place "for the kids":


Have you ever been to a HeadStart Classroom? Have you ever met the families whose children go to HS? HS is more then just literacy for children. It teachs them hygeiene. It may be the only hot meal they get all day. They get regular checkups. HS helps parents navigate the HHS system which is have to agree is hardly user friendly. Every year more and more money gets cut from program like HS and where does it go? Not into education. And I would like to comment that I have worked w/ disadvanted familes all of my life. They are the ones that reach out and ask for help to better their lives. Unfornately there are too many families that don't. It sounds like you have worked w/ the ones who truly want to make things better. Good. You wouldn't want to see the things that I have seen. The children that don't receive help. I know that you will take this and twist it to your own meaning and that's fine. Meanwhile I will keep on fighting for the ones who are too small to fight.
I wish you the very best and can tell you are doing your darndest to try to help people. I totally salute you and respect that. You'll get no argument from me that children come first, our societal problems are hurting them the most, and it's extremely difficult to overcome all the obstacles that block too many young people from achieving a life of stability, safety, productivity and happiness. I think where we differ is in what works. You apparently believe in Head Start and other government solutions; the evidence shows that they don't work. I'm for getting the government OUT of the sandbox, and incentivizing the private sector more. It's insane to put the schools in charge of an incredibly ineffective, incredibly expensive system that shouldn't BE a "system," with no requirements for accountability and a bottomless checkbook, and then expect a better outcome for poor kids. It just isn't going to happen; it's going to make life worse for them, not better. Don't you CARE that non-Head Start kids of the same demographical backgrounds do better in school than Head Start kids? Are you trying to hobble poor kids deliberately, and bankrupt the middle class with these increasingly impossible taxes? Of course I don't believe you are. I just think this is what we get for letting government run our lives so much. Too many Americans now don't know how to run their own lives, and changes like Amendment 5 are just making that worse.
Post a Comment