Friday, November 13, 2009

Washington Education Week

Or, the WEWee for short. Essentially, the crap that's cluttering up my desktop that makes me go, "You know, that'd be great for the blog!" but that I secretly know I'll never actually get around to devoting an entire post to.

  • The Budget Stinks: So I expected that the Caseload Forecast Council might say that there were going to be more K-12 students in the system (they did), and I figured that next week the Revenue Forecast Council would crap in everyone's cereal bowl again (they're going to), so that leads one to believe that the Governor's budget next month is going to be an untold litany of horrors; truly, Chris Gregoire just may be one of the Four Horsemen.

  • Federal Way Stinks: So the schools are likely to take a hit, but the Supreme Court says that's OK because the schools are amply funded anyhow so, hey, what's more cuts? I mean, if everybody EXCEPT you had a school librarian, that wouldn't be fair, but if nobody INCLUDING you has a school librarian, that's equality, baby!

    Talk about a race to the bottom. The thing that's being lorded over Federal Way is that their WASL scores aren't terrible, but that only means that X number of kids have gotten over an arbitrary bar. Madness that way lies.

    (The Senate Democrats blogged with links aplenty, here. However, since I'm a good union guy and TOTALLY PISSED at the Dems, I encourage you to go and read 5/17 instead.)

  • The NAEP Stinks: Over at Crosscut Dick Lilly wrote what could be considered a call for national standards. Sadly, he wrapped it up in the NAEP, and I'm not frankly a fan. My bottom line--if the NAEP is the "gold standard", then why is there such a big push for national standards? If the NAEP was what it has presented to be, wouldn't we just use the standards it's been written to?

  • Fred Jarrett.....Doesn't Stink? So the dynamic last year around education reform and HB2261 seemed to be that Ross Hunter was leading the charge in the House, Fred Jarrett was leading the charge in the Senate, and everything was going to be awesome until the stupid WEA brought O'Douls to the party (I mean, who does that?!?) and injected politics into education, which was never, ever what Hunter and Jarrett wanted to do while springboarding off of Ed Reform into a run for King County Executive. The WEA, thralls to the Democratic Party that they are, then contributed to an independent expenditure against Democrat Ross Hunter accusing him of actually, literally being Willy Horton. The pleasing end result was that Rep. Hunter finished in 5th place, and when you're not at least a factor of 10 ahead of Goodspaceguy, well, you're not having a good day.

    I only rehash all of this because #1 Ross Hunter still exists, and he's coming back.....FOR REVENGE! and #2, Sen. Jarrett got himself appointed to a plum position in the Dow Constantine administration, meaning there'll be a Senate vacancy that could lead to some shuffling in both of our state legislative bodies. One of the commentators on Weekday on KUOW yesterday seemed to think that this would be a real blow to an education reform agenda that may already be teetering under it's own weight; it could be a really interesting dynamic to watch.

  • King5 on the coming pension crisis. Prepare for the savagery to follow when the state passes an income tax and most of us get nothing out of it because all of the money goes towards paying of our Plan 1 obligations.
Have a great week!

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