[Sust-mar] South Shore school closures
tom_d at chebucto.ns.ca
Mon Mar 25 13:04:34 EDT 2013
And so, it is over.
The Ruling Class has given The Elected School Board their orders.
Nothing left now but to wait for the official announcement on Wednesday.
In the end, Paul Bennett's dream- that community hub schools could be
a solution to the problem- was just that: a dream. But then, it was
never going to work anyways: there has never been- will never be- a
problem that has a solution. Problems have causes- and until the
situation that causes the problem is changed, the problem will remain.
And the painful and inconvenient truth is the cause of the problem is
us- the public, the citizens, the electorate. We are wrong. We have
made a terrible mistake.
We believe that choosing willing and capable people to represent us is
enough. We believe that electing them to office empowers them to make
decisions on our behalf. We believe in Democracy. And we are wrong.
This was never about "quality, equitable education within a healthy,
safe and respectful environment"; it was never about "Kids and
Learning First". It's all about money- OUR money- who controls it,
who gets it and- most importantly- who does not.
The Education Act was not written by those we elect, but by 'senior
department staff'- some of the richest people in the province.
The Law they wrote (Eduction Act Section 64-3B) requires every School
Board in the province to give our money to five more of the richest
people in the province- these five are called 'Superintendent' and
'Directors' of Programs and Student Services, Operational Services,
Financial Services, and Human Resources Services.
The Law they wrote (Eduction Act Section 64-3C) requires every School
Board to give them our money according to a compa-ratio based on a
"performance guide chart" and "compensation grids".
But not according to the funds they allocate to the School Board. The
Superintendent and Directors pocket theirs first. Everyone else gets
In effect, The Education Act says 'No rich bureaucrat's wealth shall
be affected by the budget cuts they make- only children and the
communities in which they live shall be harmed'.
Everything else will be affected. Programs will be cut. Unemployment
will be created. No senior staff or Board member will spend hours
every day with our kids on a school bus, pounding out their guts on
what are called 'roads'. The Superintendent and the Directors have
instructed The Elected Board as to what their option is. It will be
approved by senior department staff "subject to this Act and the
regulations". And the 'decision-makers' are rewarded with an 'upward
trajectory in their career path'.
Our money isn't available for what we want. But they have millions to
build shiny new big-box teaching factories! Never mind that
everywhere else on the planet has long since abandoned that paradigm
as a disastrous failure: there are rich consultants, architects,
contractors and specialists lined up at the trough of our money. And
rich important bureaucrats like hanging out with other rich important
people. The signs will read 'Creating good jobs and building our
economy- one destroyed rural community at a time'. And yes, they will
use our money to make the signs as well.
Thursday evening our community will gather in our fire hall. We will
be joined by elected politicians and their campaigning wannabe-elected
counterparts. Each of them stood in School Review meetings "trying to
make sure the 'keep the small school message' is received loud and
clear". Each of them will wring their hands in sorrow and compassion.
None of them will admit that those we elect have no power whatsoever
to do anything differently, even should they be appointed Minister.
None of them will admit that their 'party' will never challenge the
authority of the Education Department bureaucrats, because doing so
would mean they would have to admit that what is going on in Education
is not an anomaly, but endemic throughout government.
No 'party' will admit that both the electorate and the elected have
completely lost control of governance, that the entire
policy-development and decision-making ecosystem in the province has
been usurped by 'senior staff' who 'advise the Minister' on what
decisions have been made, and write the briefing notes, the 'talking
points', the script for the announcement to be read by the Minister.
No 'party' will admit that the political process has been degenerated
to nothing more than a red-herring sideshow designed to draw our
attention away from the assassination of Democracy- "Look at our
different-coloured party hats, don't look at what's really going on."
Thank you, George Orwell- you were right.
99 Tannery Road
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