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Monday, February 11, 2013
Remember back in the old days when we learned the alphabet with a musical rhyme that took us from A to Z? Part of that alphabet has now become very popular in Richmond. That part goes A - B - C - D - F. Yes, our leaders have just come up with a brilliant idea that is going to completely and forever change education in Virginia. Gov. Bob McDonnell and his faithful followers in the House and Senate, who for the sake of brevity I will refer to as the Cutters, have achieved this name for what they have done for school budgets in our state.
This brain trust has decided the only way to aid education in the commonwealth is to give a letter grade to these lazy, deadbeat teachers in schools that are not successful. What a great idea.Why didn’t McDonnell and the Cutters think of this sooner?
I can see the plan. We will shame and harass teachers into doing better, and if that doesn’t work, we will close the schools and send them packing. It doesn’t matter that the school system’s funds have been cut by millions for the past four years, that some schools have already closed, and class sizes are getting larger every year.
It doesn’t matter that teachers’ days start around 7 a.m., sometimes go to 5:30 or 6 p.m., and that they lug out enough paperwork to keep them busy half the night. It doesn’t matter that they spend their own money for classroom needs. It doesn’t matter that in the course of a day, some of these teachers are threatened, cursed and called every four-letter word in the book by the nice young men and women that the Cutters are so concerned about.
McDonnell is right. He and the Cutters ought to test their steel some more. Let’s give the schools less again this year. This will make their class sizes even larger. We’ll soon be able to get rid of these no-good deadbeats who are a drag on the education process in Virginia.
Since McDonnell and the Cutters have come up with such a great idea, I think we should also give them letter grades. It should be an A+. But wait. Since they have cut $14 million from Roanoke County schools in the past four years, we will just make it an A. That’s still a very good grade.
Just a minute. To keep the boat afloat in those years, the school board had to cut 236 positions from our workforce. So let’s make their grade a B. You know what? I forgot to mention that we lost 115 teachers in that time, so it looks like it’s going to be a C. But that’s not too bad. Still, considering the three schools we had to close, it can be only a D.
Oh, by the way, about that big raise McDonnell promised the teachers this year, how disappointed we were that his budget calls for the state share to be $741,000, and that could be one-time money, and that we will have to pay the rest — another $1.2 million for all staff. Good trick, McDonnell. What grade can I give you now?
Since we will be closing all those schools and firing all those lazy teachers who didn’t get a good grade, does this mean that we can get a new governor and new cutters?
Boy, I like McDonnell’s style. And I see that he and his Senate and House friends all use the same technique. I think they may have picked it up from Washington. The technique is: If you are failing at what you were elected to do, blame someone else. It works every time. If you don’t believe it, just ask President Obama and the D.C. Cutters.
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