Friday, September 12, 2014

Anthony Brown Hates Daycares?

Current Lieutenant Governor and candidate for governor Anthony Brown is making a case of why he should be our next governor.  At this point, I'm still waiting for him to give us a good reason.

One of the items on his agenda that he and his lackey Ken Ulman are touting is "universal pre-K".  He's gone as far as saying that Republican candidate Larry Hogan is against children and their families for being against "universal Pre-K".  That's a typical Democrat line - Republicans hate children and education.

Want to know the truth about "universal Pre-K"?  Currently, every county in Maryland offers a pre-Kindergarten program.  Not all schools offer a pre-kindergarten program, but the program is available.  Children must qualify for pre-kindergarten and acceptance is based on need, either a learning need, or an economic need.  Once those slots have been filled, the program is opened to children who do not have a need.

Anthony Brown claims that many Marylanders do not have access to a pre-kindergarten program.  If their child does not qualify in their school district then that would  be true.  However, Anthony Brown totally screws up when he says that children don't have access to quality pre-K programs.  Does he mean low quality or high quality?  I'll assume Anthony Brown means that children do not have access to low quality pre-K programs.  As we all know, children in Baltimore City have plenty of access to low quality educational programs.  I'll say this claim by Anthony Brown is untrue.

Anthony Brown also claims that by offering pre-kindergarten to all children, these children will be able to get a better early education.  I think the Lieutenant Governor is saying that you basically suck at raising your kids and the state can do better.  I'm sure that's true in some areas like Baltimore City, but certainly not true in the majority of the suburban areas where children far exceed state standards and help bring up the state averages making the state's school system as good as it appears.  Don't be fooled - many school suck,  others are freaking unbelievable.

With Anthony Brown's plan, every school will be required to offer a pre-kindergarten class and all  students will be eligible to attend.  Sounds gallant, right?  However, what if the school currently does not have the facilities necessary to serve these children?  When Martin O'Malley mandated kindergarten, many school systems were forced to spend millions of dollars constructing additions to their buildings and hire more teachers.  And, of course, O'Malley didn't allow a proportional increase in education dollars to accommodate these new students for all schools.

Will Anthony Brown proportionally increase education dollars to ALL schools to pay for new facilities and teachers when he signs this into law?  I highly doubt it.  He'll just give us the typical mumbo-jumbo O'Malley crap that we all need to make tough decisions and invest in our children because they are the future blah-blah-blah.  Translation - I'll pass the law, you figure out how to pay for it.  Net result - larger classrooms, same number of teachers, more stress, fewer schools.

And don't be fooled by voluntary attendance.  It's like any law that O'Malley has passed.  This is step one.  Step two is to make pre-kindergarten mandatory.  The rhetoric will be: we need to continue to invest in our children, education is our number one priority,

And what about those pesky daycare centers?  If the state of Maryland makes pre-kindergarten attendance mandatory, which you know it eventually will, then one of biggest institutions to suffer this change will be daycare centers.  Daycare centers don't just include the mega-daycare centers like Celebree' and Kindercare where your child is a cog in a factory mostly staffed by high school drop-outs and unguided college transients.  There are thousands of at-home daycares run by people just trying to get by, who mostly take on this line of work so that they can be home to raise their children.  And they have the privilege to also raise yours.

Figuring daycare consists of infants, 1's, 2's, 3's, and 4's, the presumably pending mandatory implementation of pre-kindergarten will result in a 20% reduction in the daycare population.  Parents around the state will roar in celebration that they no longer have to pay for daycare for theier 4 year old allowing them to work more hours and take home more money, which is the most important thing in life, while the state pays for the daycare.  The unintended consequence of the implementation of mandatory pre-kindergarten will be the decrease in the revenue that daycare providers can earn.  Same supply, less demand, lower prices.  So while it's hard to make a living providing daycare, it'll be ridiculously more difficult after Anthony Brown gets through with them.

There seems to be an unfair assumption that daycare providers make a lot of money.  If you consider the typical at-home daycare provider, they watch usually 2 kids, at an average rate of $185 per week, that's $19,240 per year.  That's less than the typical fine for any sports figure's transgression.  Anthony Brown wants them to make less money? Shame on him.

I'm not sure if Anthony Brown and his side-kick Robin, I mean Ken Ulman, have thought through all of this, or if they have, perhaps they just don't care about the rest of the people.  My assumption is that Anthony Brown does, in fact, hate daycare providers.

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