Time to close failing schools

Teachers in the Oakland Unified School District in California are on a hunger strike to protest the district’s plan to close or merge 16 schools (“We love to love teachers, but budgets don’t show that,” Los Angeles Times, Feb. 6).  They argue that doing so will displace hundreds of minority children.

But what the teachers fail to acknowledge is that these children are not getting a basic education.  They can’t read at grade level, for example, which is far worse in my opinion than having them uprooted. Schools exist to teach subject matter.  They are not created to serve as childcare centers. Yet the latter seems to be the basis for the hunger strike as much as the threat of losing their jobs.

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