Dept. of OUR Collapsing Schools

Artist: Larry Wright, Detroit News.

It seems that the teachers decided to skip school today so they could protest charter schools:

The Detroit Public Schools abruptly canceled classes for its 153,000 students today, after teachers threatened to use personal days to protest a political deal that would have expanded charter schools in the city.

As officials announced late Wednesday that they had too few teachers to open, Gov. Granholm broke off negotiations with Republicans, apparently ending talks on charter school expansion. Nevertheless, teachers did not cancel the scheduled protest.

The district estimated that 3,200 of the Detroit Federation of Teachers’ 12,500 members would take personal days to attend the 10 a.m. Capitol rally.

Yup, that’s democracy – 25% of the employees get to decide what 100% are going to do. Here’s the kicker:

Union officials argued the effort to stop charter expansion was worth any inconvenience.

Of course it does. Charter schools threaten the power of the teacher’s union. To hell with what’s best for the kids – they stopped caring about that decades ago. And it’s about money too, of course:

(Schools chief executive Kenneth) Burnley and others have opposed the charter expansion, estimating the district could lose close to 25,000 students in 10 years, which would translate to a loss of about $180 million in state aid.

However, it has become blindingly obvious that throwing money at the school systems doesn’t result in better education.

Union President Janna Garrison said she was pleased Granholm hasn’t signed anything but: “We know that those who have sponsored this aren’t going away.”

Teachers will be carpooling and some have arranged for buses to take them to the Capitol, she said.

“The overwhelming support of the rally by our members show the depth of their commitment to our students,” Garrison said. “We invite the parents to come to Lansing and stand up for their children.”

One problem with that, Ms. Garrison: I doubt the majority of parents interested in protesting the actions of the teachers and their unions can afford to take the day off from their non-government, non-union jobs. They actually have to work for a living.

If it’s at all possible, home school.

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