As many in the Republican Party and certainly in the Tea Party already know, our education system across the state and across the country is in deep trouble. The standing of our youth as compared to other countries is falling, see here, while the money we are asked to give the education system is never enough, see here. The vast majority of educators come from liberal educational experiences where they are trained to indoctrinate our kids, rather than teach them to think. This indoctrination is lacking in both an emphasis on the basics of the three R’s and most conservative principles, while being full of socialistic thought and replete with agnostic teaching lessons, explicit sex and the belief that America is actually an evil nation.
Virginia needs to start the process of “taking back” our educational processes from the far left. I attended an event in northern Virginia back in August that featured Carly Fiorina and Ed Gillespie in a discussion about job creation and economic growth. I was pleasantly surprised that Mr. Gillespie initiated a conversation about education in the forum. He stated:
“Both in higher education, and K-12, competition is good for everybody. Competition is good for Coke and it’s good for Pepsi. Competition makes everybody better. Right now, we are too insulated from competition in higher education and in K-12. That’s why I strongly supported Delegate Dave LaRock’s bill for education savings accounts in Virginia. I think ESA’s are very innovative, especially when it comes to special-needs students, but, obviously, we can go broader as well. I think public schools would respond to ESA’s in ways that make our public schools better.”
This was very good news for me. When a candidate for state office is willing to carry the torch for changing our failing educational system with these kinds of ideas, I’m all ears! Having worked with Mr. Gillespie while organizing the Liberty Farm Festival, I reached out to him afterwards to discuss Virginia education. I expressed the need for more openness in our state rules for other competitive forms of educational experiences, including school choice, private schools to include religious schools, homeschooling and online education. He was open to hearing more and even invited me to sit on an Educational Panel he was forming.
Further, we talked about the homeschoolers sports participation legislation, to which he offered this:
For two years in a row, Gov. McAuliffe vetoed commonsense legislation to allow homeschoolers to participate in public school sports. I’d sign a “Tebow Bill” in a heartbeat. It’s not fair to deny over 32,000 Virginia homeschoolers the chance to play on their local school sports teams. Parents who choose to homeschool their children pay into our public school system without using the vast majority of public school resources. When I coached girls’ basketball at my daughter’s Catholic school, we had homeschool students on our team and I saw benefits to both them and the school.”
I look forward to future conversations and hope all the candidates for state office will see the value of changing the educational process we now have for the better. We have left the field of play too long to Liberal Democrats. It is time we brought conservative principles back into our educational system and I look forward to working with anyone who feels the same.
Virginia Tea Party Patriots Federation