The so-called school reform movement declares that public education has failed American students. But in reality, it is the policies of brutal austerity, relentless standardized testing, and teacher bashing that ensure failure – and promote privatization as the only solution. And so the beast is starved: fewer resources, fewer teachers, fewer aides to make schools safe and a worse education. Better yet, the more teachers employed in typically non-union charters, the weaker the political movement to defend public schools.
Federal and state cuts have also redistributed the burden of funding education from the state to local governments, a sharply regressive move that forces the poorest school districts to raise taxes on poor residents who can least afford to pay.
Meanwhile, Wall Street profits are up, in some part thanks to millions in transfers from broke school districts and local governments. In Philadelphia, the school district has lost $161m to interest-rate swap deals signed with Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo. They went sour after the very same banks pushed the economy into oblivion. As a result, the cash-strapped schools must borrow more money from, well, the banks.
From “The solution to US public schools is not corporate America" by Dan Denvir at The Guardian