Last week was a blur of events.
As many of you might know, the RedForEd movement in Arizona was in full force. Teacher went on strike and abandoned their classrooms until the governor signed a bill that would give teachers a 20% raise by 2020 an increases classroom finding and building infrastructure. Needless to say, even after this bill was signed, the RedForEd party was not happy. They wanted funding to come from tax increases for business and “the rich”. Instead the funding will come from Arizona growth projections, misc. licensing fees and sale tax. After Thursdays events the phrase “We Remember in November” could be seen across Facebook… yet RedForEd has claimed that this is not a leftist political agenda push to make Arizona a blue state.
Many parents, who did not support the walkout/strike, created their own movement. #PurpleForParents. ON Monday the group has 2K members on their facebook group. By Friday the membership was up to 6K. Today…. Its even more. Despite what many RedForEd supporter might think, the PurpleForParents movement isn’t anti teacher. Its about supporting our teachers, and our classrooms just like RedForEd. Unlike RedForEd, PurpleForParents wants to open up the financial books with yearly audits to make sure that funding is directed to the appropriate places and not to administrators and school boards bank accounts. The also want explain school choice for all of Arizona children, and incentivizes teachers with merit based raises based on performance and continual education similar to many private sector jobs. The movement also promotes peaceful discussions based on facts, and data.
I gave up on public school a long time ago. It has nothing to do with teachers and everything to do with the red tape and districts ignoring parents concerns when it comes to what and how things are taught. It has to do with pushing kids who need extra support to the next grade level, in order to received state funding, when they should be held back. When good schools are being punished with 30+ kids in a class and parents who live in the district do not have priority over what school, with in, their district they can send their kids too. I gave up because I saw how wasteful spending leads to greed and using our kids as pawns. Every week there was another fundraiser and every week we were pushed and bullied by the PTA and school to give more. There were weeks when my daughter came home crying because we did not raise $100 though candy bar sales. I can not support an educational system that puts administrators and teachers first, and families last.
I lean more toward the Purple movement then the Red movements. I want to open up the books, and have a say in my kids education. I want to support and reward good teachers not because I am bullied into doing so, but because they deserve it. I would like there to be more critical thinking, and hands on activities done at school. More opportunity for art and PE and class sizes to be under 20 kids. Public school is failing our kids and its up to parents to take control of their kids education whether that is public, charter, private or homeschool. The choice needs to be made and controlled by the parents and not the government. I