Again, I have to hand it to Alabama republicans, they are a....cunning bunch with steel gonads. The red, republican, dominated State Legislature, enabled by the media, created a weapon of mass distraction introducing a so-called School Flexibility Bill, that was supposed to let school district seek waivers from some policies.
The House and Senate education committees will take up today a fight over who will control the state's K-12 curriculum and whether Alabama should continue using national curriculum standards known as the common core.So while the public debate was focused on Common Core, the red republican dominated Alabama legislators were scheming in the back room... then BAM! Here come Shock and Awe!
MONTGOMERY, Alabama --Republicans in the Alabama Legislature added a sweeping income tax credit and school choice plan to a school flexibility bill in conference committee today.In order to....justify this surprise attack on public education Alabama republicans, bless their hearts, claim this bill will provide a viable alternative to families with children stuck in underperforming schools. Yeah right.
The surprise move caused a shouting match in the Senate and accusations by Democrats that Republicans were not dealing in good faith on a bill that had been debated for weeks.
So instead of finding out why the public schools are failing students and taxpayers (funding), and maybe correcting the problem (equity funding), the solution for the Alabama GOP is to abandon them, and take our tax dollars with them.
Families with students in a failing school could receive state income tax credits to offset the cost of transferring to a private or non-failing public school. The credit would be equal to 80 percent of the average annual state cost of attendance for a public K-12 student.If the red, republican dominated legislators think there are enough private, or non-failing public schools in this state to accommodate all the students who would, if they could transfer, I have a bridge in Selma to sell them. But that's the point, they know there aren't enough schools to accommodate all students, so they are making it easier for the entitled few to have access to a quality education at the expense of the entitlement crowd.
There is a common belief among conservatives that welfare programs by their very nature lead to the kind of so-called breakdown of democracy that Scalia finds objectionable in the Voting Rights Act case. Indeed, the most famous articulation of this view was Mitt Romney’s 47 percent remark: “those that are dependent on government and those that think government’s job is to redistribute — I’m not going to get them.” In essence, Romney warned that as the government creates welfare programs, this transforms welfare recipients into a constituency for those programs. And eventually that constituency becomes so large that it is impossible for a lawmaker to repeal those programs, or for people who oppose those programs to get elected.
Welcome to Sweet Home Alabama, where the republican dominated state legislature cares more about what students read instead of if they can read.