According to media sources, Governor Bobby Jindal will begin airing upwards of $100,000 in television ads per week to support his education reform agenda. The money will come from his campaign account, which still bursts at the seems despite relatively heavy spending during his cakewalk reelection. The education package will include:
The agenda is built around overhauling tenure protections for teachers, with an emphasis on student performance, expanding opportunities to open public charter schools and expanding a pilot program that uses public money to finance private school vouchers for certain low-income students.The tenure changes also involve shifting the authority to hire and fire from school boards to superintendents and, in turn, linking a superintendent’s job status to the performance of his or her schools. Enacting all those ideas together would put Jindal at the forefront of Republican governors who have successfully altered — or attempted to alter — the organization and employment policies of public education.
For high school students, Jindal also proposes redirecting a portion of state and local school spending for advanced or technical training outside the traditional high school curriculum, a kind of specialty voucher for outside credits. For early childhood education, Jindal wants to streamline prekindergarten programs under a common set of standards and oversight.
These initiatives, taken together, are focused on ending public education in Louisiana and refocusing resources on expanded use of fly-by-night charter operators and parochial schools that lack even basic accountability. You’ve been warned.