YOUR OPINION: Letters to the Editor January 14, 2013

By NEMS Daily Journal

Look to the Legislature for schools’ deficiencies
Mississippi schools have been underfunded for years by the Legislature.
Mississippi schools have the subjects they teach, how many minutes a day they teach them and when they teach them set by the Legislature through the state school board.
Mississippi schools have the list of textbooks and other materials they can use chosen by the Legislature, through the state school board.
Mississippi schools have the qualifications for the people who are chosen as teachers and administrators set by the Legislature, through the state school board.
Mississippi schools have the rules and regulations they must follow in every aspect of their operation set by the Legislature, through the state school board.
Now we are told that Mississippi schools are failing and the answer is to give money to private businesses to open schools that do not have to operate by all the rules and regulations the Legislature, through the state school board, has set.
Instead we are to take money away from our already cash-strapped school system to try a system that admittedly will at most benefit only a small portion of our students, if any.
What the governor does not tell us is that most charter schools, even with the “freedom” they have to choose teachers, methods and materials, do no better than public schools in educating students.
And some do a lot worse.
If the trouble were really the administrators, teachers, methods of instruction and materials chosen, then the Legislature, through the state school board, could remedy that in all the state schools, not just a select few.
Why am I reminded of meat processing, solar energy and ethanol? This seems to be another instance where the Legislature is overlooking the facts.
Lynn Wesson
Guntown