David Wilkerson insults the people for whom he works
October 09, 2013 12:00 AM | 987 views | 3 3 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend | print
DEAR EDITOR:

always enjoy being talked down to by one of my employees, who in this case also happens to be an alleged public servant.

The MDJ article “Officials give Core support at town hall” tells us a meeting was held to inform the public about the new educational standards known as Common Core and that it will probably not be repealed by lawmakers. Panelists included Georgia School Superintendent John Barge (running for governor), Cobb School Superintendent Michael Hinojosa (an appointed, not elected position), State Rep. David Wilkerson (D-Austell) and others.

Quite frankly, my dear, I don’t give a darn about the latest new and improved version of any government program. I do, however, care greatly about a public servant insulting the public he works for. Wilkerson showed not only his bad manners but his ignorance regarding how public schools are funded.

Wilkerson is quoted as stating: “Now, the people that are opposed to this are not the heads of the education committees in the House and the Senate. They’re not the governor. They’re not the school superintendent. The people that are opposed to this are running for other offices. Once those people put their children in public school, then they can come to me and...” We will have to guess the rest of Wilkerson’s speech because at this point he was “drowned out by applause from the audience.” Well, some of the audience.

There is no need to refute Wilkerson’s strange idea that the governor and local elected school boards are not opposed to Common Core, but I do question his knowledge of just how public schools are funded.

Is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that if your child is enrolled in a private or religious school or home schooled, or even if you do not have a child, that you must still pay taxes for the operation of public schools?

Is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that if you own a house you pay property tax and that most of that tax is used to fund public schools, football stadiums and all? Is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that even renters pay property tax as part of their rent and that most of that tax is used to fund public schools? Is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that there are no senior discounts for school tax on properties that are not homesteaded? Is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that part of sales tax is used to fund public schools? Is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that part of the income tax paid to state and federal governments is used to fund public schools?

Finally, is Wilkerson ignorant of the fact that he works for us?

Let’s put an end to demagoguery and speechifying. It is unworthy of a public servant.

And perhaps Wilkerson should go back to school and learn some basic manners.

Tony Cain

Austell
Comments
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PTA Mom
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October 09, 2013
Mr. Cain,

I'm afraid you have taken this quote completely out of context. David Wilkerson is the only Cobb legislator who has children in a Cobb public school. The people who are opposed to Common Core are generally people who do not. Of course he is not ignorant of puclic school funding and this panel discussion had very little to do with funding aside from the people who have no investment in our public schools (other than their taxes) asking questions based on misguided, fear-mongering misinformation.

Who went to bat when CCSD was considering cutting Media Parapros? Who not only supports, but champions CCSD schools (and not just the ones his children attend)? Who is visible at Cobb school events and actually speaks to people in the community (again, not just in his district)? Who honestly works to explain to his constituents what is happening at both state and local levels?

David Wilkerson.

He was in no way insulting. He simply pointed out the fact that most people who are stirring up rumorr and calling for repeal on Common Core are not sitting home with children doing homework or listening to tired teachers and change-weary parents who are ready for some stability in our schools. The "repeal" of Common Core would leave us with yet another change that we simply don't need if we are to continue in any forward motion. And no one has offered any viable alternative other than "I don't want my tax dollars funding this program that being forced on us" - which it isn't. That was the context of his statement and it was echoed by the applause of the crowd because we AGREE.

Why malign one of the honest people who is trying to do right by Cobb county children and teachers by calling him ignorant and in need of manners based on one sentence you read in this paper? It's just petty and fortunately, given his track record, it frankly doesn't match with who he is.

Tony Cain
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October 22, 2013
Why not take care of your own children?

If you can afford to do that, why have children?
Education Advocate
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October 22, 2013
Thank you Rep. Wilkerson for arranging this forum to permit some truths to enter the discussion of Common Core.

The Common Core’s language arts standards, for example, assert that, by the end of eighth grade, students should be able to write an essay that includes “a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented.”The math standards suggest that students preparing to enter fifth grade should know how to use addition, subtraction, multiplication and division “to solve word problems involving distances, intervals of time, liquid volumes, masses of objects and money.”Now who can argue against that?
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