“I don’t think there should be public unions, period…” Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush (Photo courtesy of CTNewsjunkie)

Jeb Bush, the “other” Bush son, who is also known as the former governor of Florida, made a stop in Connecticut yesterday to speak at the Connecticut Policy Institute, a “think-tank” formed by former gubernatorial Tom Foley.

After getting done calling unions a “conflict of interest,” Bush went on to salute Governor Malloy’s “Education Reform” legislation.

According to the news coverage in CT Newsjunkie, Bush told the audience that, “It looked like [Malloy’s bill] got watered down a little bit because the status quo forces are pretty strong and powerful, at least there’s the perception that they are. But I think that is a success that you’ve started on the journey.”

Jeb Bush’s claim is that the education reform package that he pushed through in Florida has dramatically improved the quality of education in his state, as measured by standardized test scores.

Of course, that statement doesn’t remotely describe the truth, but honesty has never been a particularly important trait with some in the Bush family.

Bush, who formed his own “education reform” group called, Foundation for Excellence in Education, bills himself as one of the nation’s top “education reformers.”  Recently he joined Michelle Rhee at the Republican Nation Convention to co-host a viewing of the new anti-teacher movie, “Won’t Back Down”

Meanwhile, Florida’s State Board of Education continues to push a reform agenda that includes the massive expansion of charter schools, virtual schools, more standardized testing and stricter “teacher evaluation” systems.

Although a recent investigative report in the Miami Herald found that “86 percent of charter schools do not have any disabled or special education students…despite state and federal laws that require charter schools to give equal access to these students,” Bush remains a champion of “choice.”

In a speech to the Republican National Convention this year Bush said, “Everywhere in our lives, we get the chance to choose…Go down any supermarket aisle – you’ll find an incredible selection of milk. You can get whole milk, 2% milk, low-fat milk or skim milk. Organic milk and milk with extra Vitamin D. There’s flavored milk- chocolate, strawberry or vanilla – and it doesn’t even taste like milk. They even make milk for people who can’t drink milk…Shouldn’t parents have that kind of choice in schools?”

And to the issue of standardized testing, more than 60% of Florida’s school districts have now signed onto the national petition demanding that government rely less on high-stakes standardized testing.  [PS, if you haven’t signed onto the anti-standardized testing petition being circulated Parents Across America – Connecticut Chapter, please click here: http://www.change.org/petitions/reduce-the-use-of-standardized-testing-in-connecticut]

Oh, and as an aside, and not surprisingly, as to the recent teacher strike in Chicago, Bush called it “outrageous.”

From the news reports on Bush’s visit, it appears that no one from the Malloy Administration was there to accept the former Florida Governor’s accolades.


For more coverage of Bush’s visit see CT Newsjunkie at http://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/ctnj.php/archives/entry/former_florida_governor_praises_cts_education_reform_efforts/?utm_source=Coffee+and+Politics+No.+298+Sept+20%2C+2012&utm_campaign=Issue+298+%7C+Morning+Coffee+%26+Politics%3A+Election+Drama+Unfolds+In+Court&utm_medium=email

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  • Buygoldandprosper

    Jeb is running for president in four years so I suppose we will be seeing his face more often than not. Would he appoint King Dan to an office,and would King Dan work for him?

  • Magister

    Diane Ravitch observed that it makes little sense for the Gov of an educationally low performing state to give policy adivce to one of the highest performing ones. It’s all about the kids, though.

  • George P

    Milk and education are analogous? One is a product whose production can be controlled. The other is a process with many variables. Ain’t it great that folks who have no experience with pedogogy or knowledge of learning have the answers? The fact that it’s hedge fund managers, people with pubic policy degrees (but no experience in education), and career politicians driving these efforts ought to alarm parents the country over. But money and PR are selling this steaming pile to too many gullible people.

  • Bill Morrison

    Of course, standardized test scores do not really indicate improvement or failure, but conservatives cannot think beyond a catch phrase anyway. And, to see what conservatives have in store for us after they demolish both public and private unions, just look at last year’s CNN story about how American corporations are treating their work forces overseas when they do not have unions or labor laws to worry about. It is a remarkable portrait of the condition of labor during the Gilded Age! As Davy Jones of the Monkees once sang, “Look out, here comes tomorrow!”.

    • JMC

      Some conservatives can actually think. I like to believe I am one. We are no more monolithic than Democrats. I taught for 25 yrs. in public schools and was a Union building rep and Union executive board member for several of those years. 1/3 of the members of the National Education Ass. described themselves as conservative 10-12 yrs. ago,, according to an amazing admission made then in an NEA member bulletin published when Reg Weaver was NEA president.
      However, NONE of the values and beliefs of conservative NEA members ever were or are in evidence in the NEA’s lefitst platforms that are drawn up and promulgated before presidential elections. This to me is an unconscionable betrayal of the values of 1/3 of its dues-paying members. But conservative NEA members keep and have kept their mouths shut, if they even knew or cared about the NEA’s radical leftist social agenda, because the Democratic party was supposedly “lookin’ out for teachers”.
      This has all changed with the privatization movement. Privatization is impossible without the connivance and direct support of Democratic politicians, parents, and school boards members, because this movement is overwhelmingly directed at Blue, Democratic demographic zones. The movement cannot exist without them. To me, as a conservative, that is an indication of Democratic hypocrisy and charlatonry. It is also characteristic of many of the blue Ivy League grads who go for the big bucks, whether as Wall Streeters or CT Ed Commissioners. And Dem politicians like Malloy who surrounds himself with smarter, still less principaled creatures. And states like ours run by Democratic politicans who have no qualms about burying future generations in unthinkable debt in order to pander now to voters and stay in office (not, of course, only a Democrat characteristic!)
      Welcome to your new, viral Democratic party.

      • JMC

        And BWT, to me Arne Duncan and Barrack Obama are merely Stefan Pryor and Dannel Malloy writ large. I believe Malloy would consider that a compliment. Of course he would; Obama is his role model and Malloy even copies Obama’s movements and agendas.

      • Windham Guest

        I understand your sentiments, JMC, but I will say that I have seen evidence that Pryor is actually a Republican in his own right, and his mother is a Republican delegate from New York. It doesn’t matter that much, as you say, with people like Obama, Duncan, Malloy, et al.

      • msavage

        Oh come on, JMC–do you honestly claim that the Republican party is any better? Both parties are corrupt to the core. But the GOP has seriously gone over the cliff with Romney. Look at this: http://readersupportednews.org/off-site-news-section/69-69/13544-full-secret-video-of-private-romney-fundraiser
        Is this really a person that you want running this country?

  • Linda174

    I am stuck on two things…why is Jeb Bush lecturing anyone about education issues and who gives a crap what he thinks? He is the one behind the cyber charter push in Maine…..he will go away when he and his cronies can’t make money off our kids.

    Opt out…no testing…no money..no more corporate “reform”.

    They go away when they are held accountable and they can’t use our kids to rake in tax dollars as profits.

  • buygoldandprosper

    Just a note…Jeb looks like John Rowland in the photo.No doubt he has better legal advisors…

    • Windham Guest

      He looks like the milkman paid a few unscheduled visits to the old Bush ranch. Or maybe the mailman.

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