For years I’ve lamented the fact that we’ve thrown more and more money at education in New Mexico with absolutely no return on our investment in the one place that it matters most – improved student performance. In fact, it could be easily argued that the more money we put into the system, the worse it seems to fare for our children. The education unions have proven that when push comes to shove they are more interested in maintaining hierarchies than improving the system for our children, or allowing exceptional teachers in the rank and file a place to flourish.
So, now we’ve got new leadership on the fourth floor, and you know what? Governor Martinez is actually shaking things up. She is looking at a broken system and an empty piggy bank, and saying it’s time to take a different approach. Now, the left is famous for talking a big game and promising bold change, but in the end delivering the status quo. In fact, threaten to upset their apple cart, and they’ll pull out the lawyers to look for any minute legal justifications to avoid change:
Republican Gov. Susana Martinez’s nominee for public education secretary, Hanna Skandera, faces questions in the Legislature over whether she meets constitutional requirements for the job.
The leader of the Public Education Department must be a “qualified, experienced educator,” according to the New Mexico Constitution, but Skandera has never worked as a teacher or administrator in a public elementary or secondary school.
Skandera is subject to Senate confirmation, and Majority Leader Michael Sanchez, D-Belen, said lawmakers are trying to determine what the Constitution means by “educator.”
“I don’t think we should just close our eyes to that issue,” Sanchez said recently.
Just in case you’re wondering, when Senator Sanchez isn’t putting unions before children, he’s practicing law. Now before some bozo tries to make the case that only someone who has spent some time in a classroom can run an education department, let me say that is utter nonsense, and for the record, I spent five years in the classroom. Let’s also forget about the fact, that if someone has a Master’s degree, than they have spent an awful lot of time in a classroom. And, let’s move beyond the buffoonery which would pretend that if someone has served as an adjunct professor and guest lecturer at a University, which Ms. Skandera has, they are less of an educator than say a fourth grade teacher.
After all, according to the Union and good Senator’s logic, the only one capable of running a fast food enterprise is someone who has served time as a fry cook, and we all know that’s not true. But, I’ll tell you one good thing is coming out of this. This desperate last ditch ploy by the entrenched beneficiaries of the status quo make it abundantly clear that Governor Martinez’s selection for education secretary is going to shake up and truly attempt to improve the system.