Monday, August 11, 2003
Advertisements for vouchersFun with unions... a New York City junior high teacher was arrested for possession of cocaine and marijuana. Did I say teacher? I meant "dean of discipline." He pled guilty to a felony. The Department of Education fired him. Well, they tried, anyway. But he entered a "drug treatment program," and so an arbitrator has now ruled that he should be allowed to keep his job.
The arbitrator's "logic," and I use the term loosely, was that since completion of the diversion program would leave the teacher without a criminal record, the Education Department couldn't fire him. Ain't tenure grand?
But I'm sure the real problem with public schools is that not enough money is being thrown at them. And vouchers can't possibly help, because, after all, private schools don't have the same highly-qualified teachers the public schools do.
(Incidentally, none of my comments should be read as an endorsement of the drug war. The whole fiasco just points out the idiocy of the whole situation. First we pretend that possession of a recreational substance causes harm. Then we pretend that we can "treat" people who are carrying these substances around, as if they had pneumonia, when what we're really doing is making politicians look compassionate while keeping jails from filling up too fast. Then we pretend that this "treatment" erases the harm supposedly caused by the offense itself. And at the end of the process, we've spent thousands of tax dollars for no clear reason, and have accomplished nothing. But all that aside, it hardly sends the right message to students to tell them that the person in charge of enforcing the rules against them doesn't have to obey the rules himself.)
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