Your Taxes are Paying for Hobbies

The following article was written collaboratively with Craig Allen, who is the Superintendent of Breitung Schools. The opinions expressed here are our own. Our tax dollars are increasingly paying for boutique classes attended in segregated settings for homeschooled families. Homeschool parents, who do not want their children to attend school with children in their communities, are being catered to by public school districts who are finding workarounds and loopholes in Michigan’s school funding rules. The …

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In Praise of Politicians

The disappointing, soul-crushing cynicism about politicians and politics has left no oxygen and no apparent energy for discussion of what a good politician is and the importance of politicians in general to a healthy democracy. If democracy is to survive, politicians are a necessary and required element of the system. The desire to serve the public good is a respectable and honorable goal which merits more credit than it receives. It is likely that there …

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Mr. Trump Must Hold Russia Accountable

Our nation was founded in order to be free of foreign intervention in the affairs of its people and its political processes. In the Revolutionary War, patriots valiantly fought and died for the right to hold democratically determined elections. Our men and women have laid down their lives in wars since in order to preserve and protect our nation and our right to elect the citizens who will lead us. Russia’s intervention in our presidential …

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Legislative End-Run around Wolf Hunting is a Dangerous Precedent

Before leaving Lansing during the recent Lame Duck session of Michigan’s congress, the Michigan House and Senate passed legislation permitting wolf hunting and sent the package to Gov. Snyder’s office for his signature. The governor should not sign the bill. Even though I did not agree with the outcome of the 2014 vote in which Michigan voters struck down wolf hunting in Michigan, I do not believe that legislators should then use their power to …

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Home Schooling and Child Neglect

One function of public schools is to assure the safety of children. The school choice movement, with its lack of oversight, makes a mockery of this aim. As a principal and now as superintendent I have seen the neglect unmonitored school choice makes possible. Public schools are responsible for tracking attendance and for reporting suspected abuse. One way for lousy parents to fly under the radar of intervention on behalf of kids is to pull …

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GOP plan would disband state education board

I read with interest Ingrid Jacques’ column about Michigan Rep. Tim Kelly’s plan to dissolve the State of Michigan School Board and replace it with a board appointed by the Governor. Rep. Kelly’s reasoning for wanting to eliminate the School Board are a repugnant example of the poor quality of political leadership Michigan residents are seeing too much of.

Response to Speaker Ryan

A few weeks ago I took the time to write Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan about my concerns regarding increasing partisanship in politics. I received a response from his office today. My response and his office’s email are below: Dear Speaker Ryan, Thank you for your response regarding the unceasing partisanship in today’s politics. I agree that we should be working on ideas from both sides of the aisle and would ask you to …

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It’s spring and testing season is soon upon us!

High stakes testing and whether once annual tests are worth the time, effort, and costs of such testing has come under a great deal of scrutiny and question throughout our nation. Michigan recently changed from administering the MEAP test to grades 3-9 in the fall to the new M-Step exam which is now given in the spring. Despite the change to a new test, the same questions about the value of any test given one …

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Who needs to do their job? Nobody!

Because I did not vote for the current governor and because I do not like many of the policies he and the Republican legislature pass, I have decided that I will not, from now and until the public elects the people I believe should be in office, do my job. I mean, I’ll show up and sit in my office and interact with my fellow workers…but get anything done? What? Why?