Re: Specific recipe must be followed to end inherent discrimination, Aug. 16,The News.
Dan Pletch, Dundas
Clearly this is an emotional issue for people, but we need to evaluate and make decisions based on logic. The letter writer’s claim that amalgamating the public and separate school systems encroaches on religious freedoms reveals his bias. People can still practice their own religions in the place where it’s always been done, at church. This issue needs to be explored from a logical and rational point of view.
First of all, the author’s suggestions to reform the education system instead of eliminating the separate system are very short-sighted.
A voucher system where taxpayers choose which educational system they want to financially support? Imagine a system where public money is not centrally controlled, but in the hands of individuals.
The costs to administer such a system would far exceed the current one, not to mention the social and political rifts it would create between friends, families, and society on the whole.
A merit system to recruit and keep quality teachers in the system is a good idea. We want our brightest and most committed individuals working with our children. However, this merit-based system will not save money.
Whether you are paying capable or “deadwood” teachers, you’re still paying them the same. Besides, teachers are already evaluated at regular intervals throughout their careers. We also don’t want teaching to become a transient position where people simply do it for a few years, then quit when something better comes along. We need stability in the education system — well educated and committed individuals — and to attract these types of people, you simply have to pay them well.
At the end of the day, this should not be a competition. The government needs to come up with a system that will keep our education system operating at a high standard, while being financially responsible. However, the fact is, spending extra money to administer a separate school system does not improve students understanding of the three R’s — something the author claims should be the main focus in schools today.
There is only one reason that the separate system still exists, and it’s political. Politicians know that eliminating the Catholic school system is the financially and socially responsible thing to do, but are afraid to alienate Catholic voters and lose the next election.