Monday, January 31, 2011

New film documents how adult interests are turning schools into 'dropout factories'

Assembly-line model to blame

"Kids Aren't Cars" is a new short film series set for national release February 1st.  Using examples from the Midwest, it documents the negative impact organized labor has had on the American education system, creating a one-size-fits-all assembly line model that leaves students behind and treats teachers the same, regardless of their skill level and classroom effectiveness, stifling innovation and improvement.

See the trailer here.  The films will be released two per week - Tuesdays and Thursdays - at, beginning February 1st.  A total of 9 released are planned.

Our government education system has been spending more and more each year, yet the results have been the same.  While unions demand higher spending - which of course ends up in the pockets of their members - student test scores remain static.

"Kids Aren't Cars" tells the story through the words of education veterans who have been in the trenches and have watched our schools deteriorate.
An executive director of a literacy clinic in Detroit - where high school graduates go to learn how to read - compares the actions of the pro-union school board to the Ku Klux Klan.  "If they were sitting up there in Klan robes," she said, "we would be marching and screaming." [Eight of the 9 school board members are black.]

It tells the story of two Indiana teachers recognized statewide for their impact on students, only to be fired literally the next day because they lacked seniority of their co-workers.

It reveals details about a union-owned insurance company that forces its expensive health coverage on public schools in Michigan, stealing millions that could be spent on students. A former executive director of the company admits that it's a scam to raise millions for the teachers unions at the expense of taxpayers and students.

Numerous leaders sound the alarm throughout the series of films, but do elected leaders have the courage to stand up to the all-powerful teachers' unions?  "Kids Aren't Cars" illustrates the dire need for our leaders to take action and reform our public schools before it's too late. The United States continues to slip globally, with student achievement lagging behind nations like Iceland and Hungary.

"Our public school system, under union domination for the past four decades, is now designed to benefit adults, at the expense of children," said Kyle Olson, founder of Education Action Group and director of the film series. "The focus has been on spending - which invariably ends up in pay, health benefits and retirement for the employees, but everyone has forgotten about the kids.

"'Kids Aren't Cars'" is an unflinching look at the state of public education in America and what can be done about it,” Olson said.

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