It’s about Kansans who talk of “government schools” or worry over what an “education industry” is doing with their children, eight hours a day, five days a week.
Those Kansans now have a sympathetic majority on the board setting policy and running a department that consumes more than half the state’s general tax revenues. A $3 billion-plus enterprise is in the hands of people who question whether educators pay enough attention to parents.
It isn’t the majority of Kansans who “question educators’ attitude”, just of the Board. The schools are “public” schools, not “government” schools because the public is involved via the electoral process and through direct involvement in the schools. They are a microcosm of the melting pot that is America. There’s a reason that every new town in the Kansas Territory would build a school as soon as there were children around to attend, if not before. Education is fundamental, and it draws the public together.
People who are abandoning the system, and voucher advocates who want to institutionalize that Balkanization of the public system are working against that trend, and for reasons that harm us all.
The ID debate is annoying, but I’d rather have it out in the open as a political issue than have a patchwork of schools with biology classes of varying accuracy, from full-on creationism to the God-denying atheism that exists in no school today, but which creationists wail about. This is how politics is supposed to happen. A society comes together, debates tricky issues, and makes some common decisions. We don’t all just give up and go home.
This all plays nicely into the plan of the Christian Reconstructionists who are trying to build a new America in the image of Leviticus. They get to create a parallel government, brick by brick, and when the time comes, they can just replace the secular democracy with an authoritarian parody of the American dream.