The next time anyone is inclined to sneer at the basics as "traditional," I suggest he or she visit with a 12th -or even a sixth-grader who can barely read, write or compute and look at the pain and frustration on that student's face.
We've got a lemon factory and we're turning out 80-85 percent lemons.
It's time to admit that public education operates like a planned economy, a bureaucratic system in which everybody's role is spelled out in advance and there are few incentives for innovation and productivity. It's no surprise that our school system doesn't improve; it more resembles the communist economy than our own market economy.
To the extent that what we have is indeed a "market economy".
Here in southeastern Michigan, we always assume it only goes on in Detroit.
To be perfectly honest about it, we assume it always goes on in Detroit.
In our defense, we have beau coup evidence.
But ..... we couldn't be more wrong.
About it just going on in Detroit, we're not even a little bit wrong about it always going on in Detroit.
Here are two recent examples totaling just under $2,500,000 of fraud and theft by employees of the school district in which I happen to reside.
Richard Zaranek a former ChippewaValley elementary school principal was sentenced to 31 months in prison for embezzling $399,691 from the school's child care and parent-teacher programs from 1996 to 2003.
Zaranek a resident of Grosse Pointe Farms Michigan, siphoned funds from Cherokee's latchkey program and Parent Teacher Organization partly by persuading parents to let him handle the money.
He created phony paperwork to account for the funds and left enough money in the programs to avoid suspicion.
Zaranek also took school property - a tractor, a lawn mower, gym equipment, mountain-climbing equipment, a computer and a puppet theater.
The lawn equipment was found at his cottage in Hillman, Michigan.
Other items were said to be found at his home and at his brother's residence.
James Tague a former executive director of support services for Chippewa Valley Schools cheated Chippewa Valley Schools out of more than $2 million by inflating furniture bids through a company he secretly owned.
Tague pleaded guilty to charges of fraud.
The U.S. Attorney's Office said Tague worked out a scheme where companies he owned would bid on school furniture for the district and sell the merchandise at a huge profit to the school district.
The following trailer is for a movie that is likely to be ignored.
It needs to be seen ...... everywhere.
People in my community are attempting to bring it to town.
And since I now have a national readership.
That would be about one reader in each of the fifty states.
I'm reaching out and encouraging everybody to make a small effort toward bringing this film to your town.