A while back I pointed out a new group in Ohio dedicated to helping protect Ohio’s schools against foolishness, and that the biggest target was one Deborah Owens “Truly A” Fink. She’s been described as Ohio’s answer to Connie Morris, and frankly, I don’t want to know what that question could have been.
Anyway, the exciting news is that former congressman and mayor Tom Sawyer has signed up to run against her. Sawyer says that his platform is focused on “the broad range of the curriculum – the building blocks that comprise a thorough efficient education” and that “science education is only a part of that.
Meanwhile, Owens Fink claims that Sawyer’s supporters, including Help Ohio Public Education, are “members of the dogmatic scientific community” and that she just wants to “focus on being very clear about what students should know.” Which doesn’t, apparently, include science.
Tom Sawyer’s Congressional biography explains that he was “actively involved in every education measure in the House of Representatives since his election” in 1986. He left the House in 2003, having voted for No Child Left Behind. Before his political work, he was a school teacher, so he knows what he’s doing.
School boards matter. They set the tone for education throughout a state. In states where there isn’t a culture war being fought in the board, the focus can stay on what will best prepare a child for the complex world of the future. In Kansas or Ohio, where this is a constant issue, time is sucked away, time that should be spent on new approaches to integrating technology into the classroom, on promoting new and effective ways of teaching ideas, or on introducing newly discovered information.
Help Tom Sawyer take back the Board, and I promise he won’t make you whitewash his fence.