Tuesday, September 13, 2005

First Class Education and Second Class School Employees

The BJ editorializes today against J-Ken's "65 percent" proposal. The editorial correctly calls it a budget gimick. It is, but the proposal has a real agenda behind it. I suspect the agenda is saying "fuck you" to school employee unions.

Shifting money to the classroom necessarily requires cutting administration and reducing costs in transportation and custodial services. Thanks to the General Assembly's increasingly stingy education budgets, most districts are cut pretty close to the bone. What's left is privatizing services like custodial and transportation. This idea is explicitly laid out in First Class Education's website.

All of which is not entirely wrong-headed. Custodian's unions have long gamed the system, much to the frustration of teachers. That benevolent misfit who pushes the broom around often makes more than half the teachers and has work rules that guarantee him tasks that he need not complete. All this may help explain the Ohio Federation of Teachers taking the idea under real consideration.