Jeb Bush Facing the Reality of Opposition Within His Own Party


Bush has apparently noticed that having surrogates write op-eds on his behalf isn’t working and has finally taken up the pen himself. Writing predictably with cherry-picked data to justify his choice/accountability mantras, Bush targets and dismisses those who have been dealing with the disasters his policies have created in Florida schools. Writes Bush in Sunshine State News:

When we started on this course in 1999, we were considered radical. Now many of these reforms are mainstream and increasingly bipartisan.

Despite this, there will be efforts to roll back some of our most important accomplishments in next year’s legislative session, not because they aren’t working for children but because they are creating discomfort for adults. The Florida Education Association once again is arguing that we need to go back in the direction of a failed past — not surprising in that the teachers’ unions bitterly fought every successful reform since the movement began. The Florida School Boards Association also hopes to dilute accountability reforms in next year’s legislative session. If the school boards had done their job by cracking down on failing schools and ensuring all children received an education, then there wouldn’t have been a need for the reforms the boards now seek to escape.

Bush’s shrill narrative smells desperate. Admitting that school boards are opposing him is to recognize the threat they pose to his agenda. Meanwhile, Rick Scott is having a conversation with parents and teachers across the state – a direct result of this spring’s collapse of Bush’s test-dominated accountability system that stunned and angered Floridians. This week’s remarkable criticism from Republican Sen. Steve Wise of some Bush-era policies must have shocked Bush.

There are many republicans among the school boards who are standing up to Bush’s agenda. And when a republican governor and powerful state senator  begin raising concerns, the former Florida governor must face the reality that he’s being opposed by members of his own party.

About Bob Sikes

A long time ago and a planet far, far away I was an athletic trainer for the New York Mets. I was blessed to be part of the now legendary 1986 World Series Championship. My late father told me that I'd one day be thankful I had that degree in teaching from Florida State University. He was right and I became twice blesses to become a teacher in the late 1990's. After dabbling with writing about the Mets and then politics, I settled on education.
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2 Responses to Jeb Bush Facing the Reality of Opposition Within His Own Party

  1. JaneMiami says:

    I do like the 3rd grade benchmark testing, I must admit. The question becomes what one does with the results. To me, there are two alternatives: 1. mandatory remediation for 4th graders and 2. possible readiness programs offered between Kindergarten and 1st grade.

    My sister had three children in NH schools. She is a teacher and a reading specialist. One went to readiness, and it made all the difference in the world. Readiness can help a child with a late birthday, but it can also help a child who has not had the benefits of the hidden curriculum. I wish Charter Schools would concentrate on early childhood development solutions for pre-K and readiness.

    Holding a child back can be a traumatic experience. Teaching to the lowest common denominator adversely suppresses opportunities for kids who are ready to sail forward. We need real solutions, not just crony capitalism.

    More charter schools closed this week. Instead of relaxing Charter School requirements, we need to strengthen them. If Charter Schools are to offer something valuable to the mix, we need the best of the best getting in this business. Instead, I am seeing a boom town of sub-par privateers who are making big bucks on the ones who are the most vulnerable. Not impressed, Jeb.

    Governor Scott, keep listening, sir. It’s time to hear what parents and teachers have to say. I believe the truth will reveal itself. I only hope that we get to better solutions before too many children are used as guinea pigs in these half-baked educational solutions.

  2. Pingback: Jeb Bush Facing the Reality of Opposition Within His Own Party | FPEP Blog

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