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Bill Britt: Alabama education system needs a vet

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

In his run for Governor of Alabama Dr. Robert Bentley won many votes with his statement, “Alabama is sick, It needs a Doctor.”

I would like to steal a bit of that line from the Governor and say, “Alabama’s Education System is sick, it needs a veterinarian.”

Why a vet? Because a good vet can tell what is wrong with an animal even when the patient can’t speak for itself. Also a vet will administer the toughest of procedures in spite of the patients protest.

Why are Alabama’s public schools and two-year colleges in such dire straights? Bbecause of systematized corruption by the AEA and some two-year college presidents and the Alabama Board of Education.

For years, the labor union, also known as the AEA, has controlled public education and even the state legislature, that is changing. The AEA has lost considerable power with the retirement of Paul Hubbert and the takeover of the Legislature by the GOP. While Hubbert’s replacement, Henry Mabry, has battled the GOP by threatening and cajoling the Democrats and 4 or 5 Republicans (should I name, names?) he has mainly come up short. Mabry sitting on the front row of committee meetings may be menacing to Democrats but it has become increasingly humorous to bystanders and many Republicans. Mabry’s Bolviator-in-chief act is showing signs of becoming cartoonish, rather than a Dark Lord, Mabry is looking more like a kid in short pants and a beanie cap. More Jughead Jones or Goober Pyle than Lord Voldemort.

He has recently taken to casting the coming charter schools as a race issue not the choice for parents and children that it is in fact.

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Have Mabry’s paid operatives convinced him that race-baiting is a weapon to employ a la Al Sharpton?

Mabry is a son of privilege, a pampered child who now sends his own children to private school, while insisting that those without his money settle for subpar institutions. He is surround by some very smart and cunning people but Mabry may not be up to the task. If you have ever wondered what happened to jailed former Governor Don Siegelman’s staff, look no further than the halls of the AEA monolith.

I am sure the AEA board is watching to see how Mabry handles the Education Options Act of 2012, my guess is it will be Mabry’s Waterloo.

In the coming days I will be looking at Alabama’s dysfunctional Board of Education. They really need a vet.

Written By

Bill Britt is editor-in-chief at the Alabama Political Reporter and host of The Voice of Alabama Politics. You can email him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter.


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