Profit motive should not be driving education

To the Editor:

It appears that the radical Republicans in control of the N.C. legislature are starving funding for public education to make public schools fail. Then they will ballyhoo privatization as the silver bullet to “fix” education.  

North Carolina is now ranked as the 46th state in the country for per pupil education funding. If the Republican budget passes, we will be at rock bottom. No matter how Republican State Sens. Jim Davis (R-Franklin) and Ralph Hise (R-Spruce Pine) spin it, North Carolina will be below even South Carolina and Mississippi. It is not a big deal to push for devastating cuts to public schools when you don’t believe in them in the first place.

Competition based on the profit motive works well for many discretionary goods and services. From the consumer’s point of view, it’s easy to change the TV channel if you don’t like the program, visit a different restaurant if you didn’t like the meal at your regular, or use a different dry cleaner or car dealer if you’re not satisfied with the service received.

But the profit motive should not be the driving force for essential services such as national security, public safety (police, fire fighters), highways, roads, clean water and air, safe food, and health care. Education is one such essential that would not be served by rampant competition and the profit motive.

Profit is revenue less expenses. The higher the revenue, the lower the expenses, the greater the profit. I’d hate to think skimping would be done on educational expenses for my child to increase some company’s profits. A child is not a car. The profit motive should not drive decisions in providing education.

Carole Larivee


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