Thompson: Using Philanthropy As A Trojan Horse
Lee Fang's "How Online Learning Companies Bought America's Schools, in The Nation, provides the reminder that educators need regarding the primary threat to public education. Since the election of Barack Obama, teachers have concentrated on attacks on unions and the micromanaging of schooling from the Left. Fang, however, reminds us that it the Right that is most skillful in using philanthropy as "a Trojan horse" in order to destroy schools as we know them. The biggest danger is the alliance between "the billionaires boys club" and corporate-types like Rupert Murdoch who see schools as a $500 billion untapped market. Fang cites the political advice of one "reformer," Richard Berman, "rather than 'intellectualize ourselves into the [education reform] debate…is there a way that we can get into it at an emotional level?'" Berman then added, “we need to hit on fear and anger. Because fear and anger stays with people longer." Berman has run glossy ads in Washington, DC. and New Jersey that portray teachers unions as schoolyard bullies and one even seems to compare teachers to child abusers.-JT (@drjohnthompson)Image via.