Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Practical Reality

It doesn't matter what folks say something is. It doesn't matter what something is or was supposed to be. The only thing that matters is what something really is.

That is practical reality.

A perfect and timely example is "local control" and what makes this pretty interesting is that DeKalb's out-of-touch public school bureaucracy has co-opted the term. The assertion is that politicians elected at the county level are more "local" than bureaucrats at the state level.




But only for real simple minds, because it is little more than a play on words--a perverse little pun.

So let's look at this from a pragmatic point of view.

By and large do the voting public in DeKalb county feel that DCSD administration is "local" to them in any meaningful way? Do these administrators listen and learn about issues in the community AND address these issues in a straightforward, effective fashion? Do the public feel that it REALLY makes a difference who they elect to the School Board when Board members are structurally prevented from direct, forthright action under the threat of sanctions for "micro-managing"?

For many in DeKalb the answer is probably a strong yes, but for others it is an even stronger no. The former have representation in the controlling bloc which wields the political power necessary to ensure that the hired bureaucrats bend to their will and comply with their wishes. The other Board members, who feel their constituency is not well served, are relegated to the role of annoying outsiders--increasingly less-than-loyal opposition.

It is the latter constituency, empowered by the geographical self-aggregation that prevails in today's America, who have been and will continue to be "break-aways". They do this not out of racism and only partly over money--more based on how it is squandered than where it is spent. The practical reality is that these voters are disenfranchised by a system that has so diluted their representative voice that they have no control over any aspect of the school system charged with educating our children.

Without ANY control it doesn't really  matter whether it is "local" or not and it appears this group would prefer some control at whatever level is available rather than no control at all.