Money for registering your employees to vote? Great idea if you can tell them who to vote for!
It is very easy for pundits to be critical of the public school establishment in South Carolina.
Public schools in the Palmetto State are home to some of the lowest test scores and the highest drop out rates in the entire country. South Carolina is also known for an award-winning principal caught cheating on standardized testing. Don’t forget the nation’s fastest growing race- and wealth-correlated student achievement gaps.
But no one will argue public school bureaucrats are politically ineffective.
Political partnerships with testing companies and other state and local contractors, as well taxpayer subsidies in the form of union and association dues keep the machine well funded.
From illegal candidate endorsement to corporate influence peddling to direct cash-for-vote campaign donations to flagrant ethics violations to data manipulation …and of course using public money to block education reform for handicapped children… the government school apparatus is a far-reaching and powerful political machine.
One of the failure-facilitators’ favorite strategy is to use third-party groups to work around ethics laws.
The most recent example is a joint effort by the taxpayer-subsidized SC School Board Association (SCSBA) and gubernatorial candidate former state superintendent Inez Tenenbaum’s awkwardly named political advocacy group “RISE SC.”
In total violation of South Carolina’s gambling laws, SCSBA is enticing school officials to register their subordinates to vote, and offering RISE SC financed cash prizes through an illegal chance-based lottery.
Never mind that once registered those same school officials will tell employees who to vote for.
Voter participation should be a good thing – but when public money is being used to defend and perpetuate failed schools, the so-called “educators” at SCSBA (not to mention NEA-affiliate SCEA) are wasting time and money by politicizing education. They ought to be improving instruction and offering parents real choices.