ELECTED BOARDS, THE LYNCH PIN OF FREEDOM
September 13, 2013
Early in January, 2011, Paul LePage, Republican, called me one day prior to his inauguration as Governor to discuss charter schools. He realized I was opposed to this concept which, interestingly enough, originated on the left but has been recently accepted by conservatives supporting charter schools.
The conversation was brief since the subject is really not complicated at all. The Governor asked me why I was so adamantly opposed to the concept and I said, “Governor, there is only one difference between a charter school and a public school and that difference is crucial. Public schools have school board members elected by registered voters representing the entire community. Charter schools are run by unelected councils. Some are run by elected councils, but those councils do NOT represent the entire tax-paying community and are therefore not legitimately representative of all taxpayers or voters."
The Governor responded as follows: “Well, we will have to change that,” to which I responded, “Governor, if you change that, you will be right back where you are now with a public school run by elected officials.”
This writer served as an elected school board member from 1976-1979. Those years in the seventies were tumultuous years in American education, with extremely controversial federally funded and developed values destroying programs being offered to our nation’s schools through the U.S. Office of Education’s National Diffusion Network. Whether our children were exposed to them depended on one thing: the locally elected school board.
I spent most of my term as a board member vociferously opposing acceptance of those dangerous programs. What was interesting is that the liberals in our community detested me and did everything possible to discredit me in the press, etc. They ultimately got rid of me at the polls. However, during my tenure as a board member I was able to keep those programs from being accepted, even with a majority of very liberal school board members initially opposing my “negative” position. In every case where our change agent superintendent put one of those programs to a vote we common sense elected board members managed to squeeze through with a majority vote in opposition.
There is no locally elected board more important than school board. Other local elections for town selectman, county commissioner, town clerk, etc., are, of course, important due to the impact on taxpayers of services provided by the town government. However, taxes aside, those offices do not affect our children’s futures, their understanding of what is right and wrong, their ability to pursue their dreams through an understanding of basic academics, including the history of our nation, the Constitution, Bill of Rights, etc.
I believe it was the late Dr. Jacob Bean of California, author of The River of Pollution, who said, “There is NO more important elective office in the United States of America than that of elected school board member.” He went on to speak of elected board members' influence on the development of good citizens with sound morals and values, citizens who appreciate our remarkable form of constitutional government, who will be constantly vigilant regarding any infringement upon the rights so carefully carved out in the nation's basic documents.
The reader may rightfully be saying “Oh, that doesn’t make any difference any more since school board members are so uninformed and couldn’t care less about curriculum, and are run by the unelected school superintendent. “
Whose fault is that? That is our fault. We Americans have allowed that to happen.
It need not continue to be the case. We must seize the reins of education and turn it back to its excellence prior to1965 when we had the finest system of education in the world. How to do that can be the subject of another much more lengthy article.
My purpose in writing this short article is to stress the very dangerous situation our nation is facing today with citizens, rightfully concerned over the deliberately created dumbing down of the public schools, calling for charter schools run by unelected councils.
Are Americans really willing to accept education dictated by the corporations and government, not by individuals elected by the community? Such education will change the entire purpose of “education” as we have come to know it. Our competitive academic system of education is even now being focused on non-academic global workforce training to spin off profits for the global elite. Our children's futures will be determined by decisions made by unelected corporate/government partnerships. Whether your child receives training will depend solely on what jobs need filling in the global economy, NOT on what job/life career he or she may wish to pursue. As Professor Eugene Boyce, University of Georgia, said, "In communist countries they do not educate for jobs that don't exist." A country run by unelected boards and councils may well be characterized as communist. Older dictionaries define this unelected council form of governance as the “Soviet Council Form of Government.”
Do not allow charter schools to continue their march across our nation. There are far too many already installed, especially in the inner cities—schools being run by non-educators trained by the Eli Broad Foundation, run by former mayors, military officers, run by corporate CEOs. Of great concern is the plethora of religion-oriented charter schools. Such schools are unconstitutional.
And, of extreme importance, is the fact that a majority of charter schools’ academic performance is below that of the public schools.
I feel strongly about this subject due to having served as an elected school board member who was responsible for keeping the values-destroying programs out of one public school system in Maine. I was not alone in my successful venture. There were perhaps hundreds of other school board members who felt as strongly as I regarding these damaging federally funded and developed programs, reminiscent of those in Common Core.
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Why have those supporting charter schools not taken into consideration all of the above reasons? Why are they not vociferously opposing this “not-so-new” concept of non-academic socialistic governance. Do they not realize that even if they succeed in abolishing the Marxist Communist Core, if they do not focus primarily on abolishing charter schools, they will, in the near future, find their children in their favorite charter school being educated and assessed according to the Marxist Communist Core standards and methods under a new label? And there will be no elected school board to whom they can go to object!
Bottom line here is: Once Americans have accepted this unelected form of governance for education—that has the second highest budget after defense/discretionary spending—there is really no hope for Americans to take a stand against the destruction of our elective system of governance in other areas such as Mayor, Selectman, County Commissioner, State Legislature, etc.
Is this change in our constitutional form of government and economy REALLY what Americans want?
An updated, abridged version of “The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America” can be purchased from NewsWithViews on their online store front.
Conservative Treason: Selling Out Your Children,
2- Win the Common Core Battle But Lose the War?, 8-21-13
3- School Choice and Charters Will Kill Private Education, Part 1, 6-21-13
4- School Choice is America's Trojan Horse, Part 1, 6-12-13
5- Masonic Snakes in Catholic Education, 2-19-13
6- The Destruction of True School Choice, 1-14-13
7- The True Goal of School Choice, 9-11-12
8- Heritage Foundation, NAFTA, School Choice and the Destruction of Traditional Education, 4-25-12
9- Regionalism is Communism, 3-10-12
10- The Charter School Trap, Part 1, 2-22-11
� 2013 Charlotte T. Iserbyt - All Rights Reserved