Here’s a terrible idea

I bet it passes:

A bill put forward by Gov. Paul LePage proposes allowing religious schools in Maine to qualify for public tuition dollars.

LePage unveiled the proposed bill with the state’s education commissioner Stephen Bowen in Skowhegan on Wednesday. Currently students in ‘school choice’ communities can attend some private schools and have their tuition paid for by the school district they live in.

I can see both sides of this argument. I went to a Christian school from K through 8 and I know it was an excellent education (minus the time wasted on religion). My class alone produced 4 high school valedictorians around the area. That’s 30 students who spread into various high schools with hundreds of kids per class and managed to succeed at a very high rate. That point acknowledged, none of this justifies using public dollars to send children to such schools. This is little more than an excuse to promote Christianity.

It’s too bad I fully expect to see a few more “Christian children” (as if there is such an absurd thing) running around in the coming years.

Please run again, Eliot Cutler

Because the guy we’ve got now is a dolt:

I can’t believe people take this idea seriously

One of the absolute worst ideas I have ever heard in regard to education has to be Maine governor Paul LePage’s idea to add a 5th year to high school so students can earn their Associate degrees.  He mentioned it during the campaign season but had gone silent on it since. I was hopeful he had abandoned the thought. It’s just awful:

  • High school teachers are not qualified to teach college level courses
  • Associate degrees typically take 2 years to get
  • High schools are not accredited institutions (I feel bad for the students that will get laughed at when they attempt to transfer their credits to real colleges and universities.)
  • This insults everyone who has a legitimate Associate degree

Unfortunately, it looks like people are still taking this stuff seriously, including the local newspaper:

A high school diploma is not enough for today’s job market, and current school programs work well for many students but still leave too many behind. Too often, students finish high school without the skills they need to get a good job or make the transition to college-level work.

Making it easier for more people to move from high school to college will not only improve their economic prospects, but everyone’s. It’s still an interesting idea and well worth pursuing.

Except this is not college-level work. There is not a single teacher in the state of Maine – or anywhere else – that is qualified to teach at the college level except in cases of special instruction and other, relatively rare exceptions – or when they are also professors. A sociology teacher at a high school cannot teach a sociology course at the college level. A high school biology teacher cannot teach me about genetics under any formal requirements. The same goes for all the major subjects. Until colleges start offering gym courses, high school teachers need to stay in their own buildings, teaching at their own level.

This is just the worst idea I’ve ever heard. I’m not saying that because LePage is a Republican and generally a bad governor. I’m saying it because it’s so ridiculous and demonstrates an extreme poverty of understanding of the differences between high schools and colleges. If this dolt wants to subsidize real college degrees, earned at real colleges, then great. Do it. Or if he wants to trim many of the useless classes high school students have to take so that they can more easily be sent to classes at universities and community colleges, then great. Do it. But if he wants to add a 5th year of high school without accounting for the quality of instruction, the new class space needed, the space needed for the added students – the high school in my city already has taken on 7th and 8th graders in addition to the other students – or why he believes it’s okay to give away two year degrees to under-taught students in a hugely compressed time frame, then no. That’s awful and Paul LePage needs to keep his face away from anything to do with education. He obviously has no idea what he’s doing and he hasn’t bothered to think through this idea in the least.

At least LePage isn’t pretending he doesn’t mean the Christian god

Maine’s governor, Paul LePage, has declared August 6 to be a day of prayer and fasting:

WHEREAS, in times of trouble, even those who have been granted power by the people must turn to God in humility for wisdom, mercy and direction. In the spirit of the Book of Joel, Chapter 2, Verses 15-16, I urge a solemn gathering of prayer and fasting. As those verses admonish: “15Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly … 16 Gather

the people, consecrate the assembly… “As Jesus prayed publicly for the benefit of others in

John II :41-42, so should we express our faith in this way.

NOW, THEREFORE, I PAUL R. LEPAGE, Governor of the State of Maine, do hereby proclaim

August 6th as

A Day of Prayer and Fasting for Our Nation

This is highly exclusionary and a misuse of public office. LePage cannot constitutionally use the government of Maine to endorse a day of prayer. (The fasting will be good for him and other Mainers of his girth, though.) The only positive thing that can be taken from this is that at least LePage is being honest and not pretending like he’s declaring a day for all religions. It’s pretty obvious he just means his.

Maine governor removes own picture

In an effort to be consistent, Maine governor Paul LePage has announced that he is removing his own picture from the official state of Maine website. “I just don’t see how I can show my face and not be a contradictory asshole”, said LePage.

LePage was referring to his previous douchebaggery act of removing a mural featuring great moments in Maine’s labor history from the Department of Labor building. When asked why he was being such a prissy little dick, he told reporters that the mural was hostile towards business owners who enter the Labor building. Now in an effort to be consistent, LePage has said he will take down his own image from Maine.gov.

“It wouldn’t be fair of me to leave my fat fucking face up there. It’s clear that not only am I hostile to the simple aesthetics of the website, but my face represents an anti-common sense, anti-labor, anti-poor people, anti-black people, anti-paying taxes honestly, anti-science, anti-intelligence point of view. If the Department of Labor mural’s hostility to business values justifies its removal, then certainly my anti-all things good values justifies the removal of my mug.”

Opposition to LePage was stunned. Democratic leader Emily Cain of Orono expressed utter amazement. “This guy has been a pure douche for the past 3 months. He has made Maine look like a fucking joke. I can’t believe he would actually go and do something intelligent for once.”

LePage’s supporters were less enthusiastic, but all said they understood. “This is a real hit to the Republican party, but at least the dickface is being consistent”, said Bangor council member and frequent radio guest Cary Weston.

The reaction of the Maine people is yet to be seen, but early comments indicate an appreciation of the first grain of honesty from the current administration.

“Ayuh, I don’t like the douche, but I’ve always felt his face made Maine’s website pretty hostile to a whole lotta common sense things. Gotta agree with LeDouche on this one”, said Joe Blow.

The administration reports that its replacement of LePage’s mug with a black hole is only temporary, however no objections have been raised. In fact, everyone has so far agreed that the new image really makes a lot of sense.

Thought of the day

As most Mainers know by now, our governor has taken to removing a labor mural from the Department of Labor. His whole point is to be a prissy little dick to everyone who isn’t a Teabagger. That is frustrating enough. But what really gets me is that he keeps telling people to get over it and to talk about something important – Hey, Paul LeDouche, you started this conversation. This is purely your fault. Own your idiocy.

The great governor of Maine

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