Thursday, January 31, 2008

Education: The Importance of Students and Educators

Mike Taylor for U.S. Congress TX-18

Education: The Importance of Students and Educators


Thursday, January 31, 2008

Education is one of the most important components of who we are as a nation. Providing funding for education must be done in whatever way possible to ensure that our children have a solid path for their future. Allowing education professionals to make decisions on how to best perform their duties must be considered a Constitutional mandate. Our forefathers dreamt of a nation of strength and prosperity and provided a guide in our Constitution to build a powerful nation of people determined to embrace life and liberty. Education is the only way to continue those dreams.

Sheila Jackson Lee has turned her back on her oath to the American people and the Constitution of this great nation. This type of action needs to stop this November. This is not something new, she has been doing it for years. In 1997 Mrs. Jackson Lee voted no on the "Education Savings Account bill". This bill was to raise the annual voluntary contribution cap for education savings accounts (ESA) from $500 to $2000 per child. This bill also assisted 'special needs' students by exempting them from the age limit of 18 to benefit. This bill also allowed businesses to contribute to ESAs. I feel that education funding for our youth should have no limitations in regard to sources. Anyone willing to contribute to education should be allowed to do so and without limits.

In addition, in 1997, Mrs. Jackson Lee voted no on the "HELP Scholarships bill". This bill would have allowed states with 'parent choice' of schools in poverty level homes to send their children to better rated schools. This bill would have also given more power to the state and local school boards, as it would have prohibited the Secretary of Education from interfering with the curriculum and administrators of participating schools.

In 1999, Mrs. Jackson Lee voted against the "Teacher Empowerment Act". This was to provide additional funding to hire more teachers and reduce classroom sizes in public schools. This legislation would have also provided more power to the state and local education boards to determine the quality of our educators and provide for mentoring programs to assist new teachers. This would have also provided the power to local school systems to improve professional development of educators by way of training for new technologies and incentives by way of compensation increases based on merit.

2001, introduced the most destructive joint venture of Democrats and Republicans to hit our education system since the excessive empowerment of the federal Department of Education. Sheila Jackson Lee voted yes on the "No Child Left Behind Act". In name, this piece of legislation sounds positive. Names can be deceiving. By implementing a nationwide testing standard for students and legislating curriculum this act has driven a wedge between our students and educators. Teachers are no longer able to take the time to identify with their class. "No Child Left Behind" forces teachers to shove information down students' throats with no methods available for retention beyond taking the tests. Students are only learning for the tests and not for life. Teachers are forced to remove the personal aspect of teaching to allow only for test subject matter. In my experience in life, the teachers that made the biggest impact were the ones that were able to connect with students on a personal level. This act has taken that away. The U.S. now ranks much lower than we once did on primary education. To add insult to injury, Mrs. Jackson Lee has voted yes on supplemental legislation that builds on this failing program. I will work to restore our educational system to its previous glory.

Finally, Mrs. Jackson Lee didn't even bother to vote on the "Reverse the Raid on Student Aid Amendment" in 2006. This important legislation provides for a reduction in fixed interests rate on student loans from 6.8% to 3.4%. This legislation also provides a total of $84 million in grants for lower income/under privileged students looking to earn degrees in higher education.

Every elected member of our federal government, as well as our armed forces, takes a vow to protect our nation from all enemies both foreign and domestic, even if that domestic enemy is our own government (Implied). An uneducated or under educated populous is all too easily manipulated and controlled. It is the duty of our government to build a defensive posture for our citizens so they are protected from a foreseen possibility of a tyrannical government. Education is the best defense against such a possibility.

For More Information Contact:

Mike Taylor for Congress
Houston, Texas

Web Site:



gunslinger said...

What your saying is true and valid, for just about every cabinet position in the U.S. government.
The government itself is a lumbering monster rolling over the average citizen, it has no interest in what is good for the people in this country or the good of the country. It is an entity of its own that is eroding the very basis of american society. This problem is so far out of control that no matter who gets elected president, his ability to do much is so limited he will just be rolled over.
There are entire segments of our government that are operating out side the ideals of our constitution, yet no one is doing anything to stop or dismantle them. Just bringing a moment of rational, logical,restructuring of the government would be refreshing. I am certain that anyone currently in power would be ran out of the country at the mere suggestion of restructuring the government to benefit the people.

I think we as a nation are rapidly approaching the same situation as the prerevolution russians were in under the Tzars in the early 1900s. The biggest similarity is the growing rift between the upper crust of society and the average person on the street. These two groups are almost totally opposite in viewpoint, "on how this country should be run". The upper eschelons are working towards a privilaged society, for themselves. What ever they don't want is left to the rest of society. The average Joe is totally helpless to get anyone to listen to him, much less make changes. The government doesn't listen to the majority, or care about it. (unless it is election time) not even then, from what I see in the primaries. The rest of the time we are being run by the minority, meaning, "special interest groups", and mostly unelected "civil servants", that hold positions by political favor, not ability.
Bluntly, the system is failing us, and nobody is willing to bite the bullet and make the hard decisions.The most obivous of the system failures is the poor job done by FEMA as a response to Katrina. That one example is obvious, the less obvious system failures are just as devastating but harder to see. The outcome of poor educational systems, for instance, won't be visible till the next generation comes into its own. (Although on a daily basis I am shocked at the ideas coming from supposedly educated people.)

While I agree that students and educators are important, they are just one of many items of importance on a long list of problems in our society.

The question we should all be asking is, " how do we go about making positive change happen.

It has to be accomplished without bankrupting the country at the same time or we all lose.

Mike said...

Thank you, Gunslinger, for your comments. You are right, there is much to be done in order to bring things back to a manageable point in our nation.

I will do everything in my power to restructure our government so that it is smaller and more manageable. The views of the people have to be considered as well as the Constitution.

Government is over blown. We are in horrible economic times with record debt/deficit and all we hear from the big two parties is that we need to spend more money on new programs.

We cannot honestly believe that we can cut taxes, balance the budget and reduce the cost burden while talking about adding new expenses at the same time. That is irresponsible and defies common logic.

I have been in the lower income bracket all my life. I understand that when yo are in economic hard times the only way to bring yourself out is to 'cut the fat'. The federal government is extremely obese and needs a solid fiscal diet and exercise to bring it back to a lean efficient machine that is non-intrusive and respectable.