I have a problem with people who somehow think certain sectors of the economy can magically be shielded from the realities of economics. The facts are that sooner or later, when real resources are not available, every area of society suffers.
A case in point of the magical thinking viewpoint about economics came out today in the News-Enterprise newspaper.
That paper opines:
“It’s time to start creating new solutions to protect schools, even go so far as to make them recession proof.”
I’m sorry, but real life does not work that way. You cannot cancel the facts of life about economics. And, you cannot create magic protection for an especially large enterprise like our public school system that absorbs an amazingly large part of every tax dollar we send to Frankfort (somewhere around 40%).
Actually, overly extreme attempts to somehow protect schools from recessions could create inducements that produce and sustain inefficiency in schools. That just adds more stress in a recession.
We might also create some very severe negative attitudes about schools in the minds of those involved in other areas of our economy (such a public safety and health, to name just two of many) that are not receiving such special treatment.
Do we need new, cost-saving solutions for our schools? You bet we do, especially solutions that get us more recession fighting “Bang for the Education Buck.” Some answers may include charter schools (which generally operate more cheaply than traditional schools) and really creative use of digital learning.
But, will workable solutions include a magic wand that somehow insulates schools from the economic realities that impact all our lives? No way! Not going to happen.