Supporting the Opportunity Education Institution is like seeing someone come down with a disease, blaming their doctor, and then telling them to switch to a new doctor before giving their current doctor a chance to treat them.
It is a policy idea that was adopted from Louisiana—a state that ranks 46th for both K-12 achievement and chance of student success, compared to Virginia’s 8th and 9th place rankings on those measures. Clearly, our legislature thinks we don’t enough education problems to deal with, so Virginia needed to borrow some from another state.
Tonight, I have a message for our legislature.
You show me a failing school, and I’ll show you a state government that is failing its schools by not funding them adequately. You show me a school that needs state intervention, and I’ll show you a state that has intervened in our local school districts so much that our teachers are throwing their hands up and saying they’ve had enough. You give me one example of a group of people that could possibly know more about governing Fairfax County public schools than this school board, and I’ll give you an example of a state government that has disregarded the views of its school boards at almost every turn over this past year.
You, Virginia legislature, have overstepped your constitutional authority, and your largest county is sending you a message tonight: turn this ship around, or we’re prepared to help sink it.