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My Response to “A Tragic Day for Public Education in North Carolina” by Diane Ravitch

To be honest, and, though I’m a Substitute Instructional Assistant, I feel that if it would be feasible for a classroom to be sufficiently functional without an assistant it should be, as any manner of employment should not exist for the sole purpose of providing employment. But no school or class should be understaffed so as to compromise student welfare or overburden instructors to the extent of diminishing their productivity, and by especially eliminating class size limits and assistants this is precisely what would happen.

Eliminating teacher tenure [and pensions] is also counterproductive in that this could very reasonably and negatively impact teacher performance, and, as you’ve previously stated, discourage acquisition and retention of quality educators, in light of job insecurity. That’s not to say that a teacher’s performance shouldn’t be taken into account, because it should. Nonetheless, efforts to eliminate instructors based on student performance should be offset with proper and continuous training through which all instructors would be empowered with proven methods of instruction and other pointers for improving student performance.

Teachers enable all professions, and they should be rewarded with the best of incentives to assure that students receive the best education.
As for the privatization of public schools, the notion of private investors sharing costs of funding public education with the government would actually be an excellent idea if all schools would be held to a uniform set of standards that would assure equity of educational quality to all students. And the fact that the potentially private public schools would receive federal funding should present a legal obligation for them to in fact be held to those standards.