We need someone that knows how to either run a business (a large one) or a very
experienced educational administrator.
Professional educators with high degrees have dropped the ball when it comes to
education. With investigations math, which many professional educators support,
mathematics has been made more complex than it needs to be. Students never do
master the basics of understanding arithmetic, which is a foundation of
understanding algebra. It took years for educators to give up the idea that
phonics should no longer be used. This in spite of the fact that learning a few
simple rules inspires initial confidence in reading simple words and sentences
and significantly cuts down on the number of words that have to be learned by
memorization alone.In short education needs an outsider with a lick
of common sense to come in and stir things up. There is no reason why the
teachers in the trenches need fear this. They will (hopefully) be given more
autonomy and better curriculums to teach from. From my conversations with
teachers in the trenches (educators who teach) they get it for the most part.
Most parents get it. Its time to pass the baton of power to a new set of people,
who hopefully will get it. Doing so is the only hope of making positive change.
Conservatives on these blogs have been called out but haven't delivered.My favorite one is about electing the President.So I'll
throw this one out there. I wasn't happy about Barack Obama being elected.
However, I'm not happy about the prospect of Lockhart in this position.
Again, conservatives, please bring forth some good defense rather
than attacking the messenger and those that defend him with cogent points.
@jed c,Re: "Those who oppose public education such, as "half
the Utah Legislature" have consistently been shown to have financial ties to
either private education, On-line education, or technology companies that sell
to the schools"...Can you point out the ties half of the Utah
Legislature have to private education? I'm calling your bluff.If you can give real evidence that backs up your accusation... I would be
SUPER surprised. These accusations are usually based on rumors,
innuendos, and what you heard from your anti-Utah-legislature friend (not
something you can actually show anybody).But a rumor's as good
as the truth... for some people.===============Re:
"conservative white Male"...Why does race matter... are we
being racist?Why does sex matter... are we being sexist?Why does
conservative matter... are we being partisan?This isn't a
partisan, sexist, OR racist thing... is it??
I don't like Lockhart (after her bitter personal comments when leading the
Legislature, prematurely exposing her ambitions to be Governor some day). IMO
she is the lesser of two evils here. Like somebody else pointed out...
"Richard Davis is slightly to the left of Mao". State Board
should not be a partisan battle... but I guess it is whether you like it or not.
@regis, I think Obama has been a fine president. He pulled the economy out of
free-fall and now our financial position is good. My own 401K is back where it
was before Bush destroyed it. My own business is booming. People now have
universal health care. We're not tangled up in a dozen stupid wars (which
Romney would have done). I enjoy living in Obamerica much more than I did living
in Bushland...or have you forgotten the apocalypse of 2008?
According to Mr. Davis, "There are many good reasons not to hire Lockhart.
One is that she lacks managerial experience. The superintendent supervises 41
school districts across the state and approximately 600,000 students. Lockhart
was a nurse, but has never managed an agency, office or business before."That was also one of the reasons Barack Obama should never have been
elected president. He had no experience running anything. And seeing how Mr.
Obama has completely messed things up, I'd have to agree Becky
Lockhart's lack of managerial experience disqualifies her from this job.
Not one person has refuted Dr. Davis' points. He wrote up a well written
article with some extremely strong facts. Pesky lil things sometimes! If you
don't agree with Dr. Davis then please actually come up with rebuttals to
his points. To merely attack the messenger and dismiss this article as
"liberal professor" just seems lazy.We deserve better.
>>Mr. Davis...is practically a parrot of the Democratic Party. Of course
he's going to argue for more of the same failed educational policies...Of course Democrats will advocate Democratic policies; but just saying
"he's a Democrat" isn't an answer because Democrats
aren't always wrong (I say that as a conservative).And Dr.
Davis' point is actually apolitical--if Utah wants a first-rate education
system, candidates for Superintendent of Public Instruction should bring
considerable relevant experience as both an educator and a manager to the table.
The consequences for children are too serious to consider candidates who've
rarely run anything bigger than their own re-election campaigns and whose
"relevant experience" often amounts attending committee meetings, giving
speeches, and voting on funding bills.If Dr. Davis is wrong about Ms
Lockhart's qualifications, she should be able to provide solid evidence in
rebuttal. If she dissembles, deflects, or otherwise tries to shift the focus
away from herself, take it as a sign that Dr. Davis likely is correct about her
qualifications and her priorities.
The Utah Retirement system is in better shape than any other in the country. It
continues to make more than it pays out and now that the legislature has killed
teacher pensions, it is in fine shape.No Lockhart.
The Professor puts the ball squarely in Ms. Lockhart's court.When should we expect to see her reasoned point by point rebuttal?
Nurses should stick to hospitals. Educators should stick to
education.Why even specialize in anything anymore if nurses can
become superintendents? Can teachers run hospitals?
It seems that the author is biased towards republicans. That evidence alone
makes me suspect of his motivation in recommending against Lockhart. Davis
states that "Lockhart, like so many of her Republican colleagues..." I
don't have any allegiances in this battle but I will not be swayed by
anyone that categorically disqualifies republicans merely because they are
republicans. I am in support of vouchers for private schools as I think we would
get much better education if I had a choice where to spend my money. It seems
that Davis is in favor of the status quo when it comes to education in Utah and
I just cannot support that position. I think his article was incredibly biased
and short sighted.
By the way, for all the liberals out there decrying the Deseret News as a
Conservative bastion, I'd point to this article as clear evidence
otherwise. I'm not sure I'd pick Lockhart myself, to be
honest. But to argue that we should oppose her because she won't shovel
money hand over fist to the UEA is just partisan Democratic politics. Union =
Democratic slush fund. The union chiefs get rich, the union rank and file get
the shaft, and all discretionary money goes to Democrat politicians--at least,
all the money that survives the union chiefs limo and lobster fund. Mr. Davis, the author here, is practically a parrot of the Democratic Party.
Of course he's going to argue for more of the same failed educational
policies: "Oh, if only we spent thousands more per student, THEN we could
achieve!" Achieve what? Mandatory tolerance, "diversity," and
deviant sexual acts being taught our students, like Secretary Anne Duncan
promotes? No thanks, we don't need to promote any of that, despite
She is qualified to be a nurse. She should not be considered for the Education
position for one minute.
While I think Utah needs a new approach to education I don't think Lockhart
is the answer. What SO many people fail to see is that Utah actually commits
quite a bit of money to education, but the dollars don't make it down to
the classroom. If people bothered to research the salaries of some school
administrators they'd see where their tax dollars are actually going. There
are administrators in this state making well over $250K. We need someone at the
state level who is keeping a watchful eye over these districts to ensure that
taxpayer dollars are being used to best serve students. While we do
need to evaluate how we educate our students, which in my opinion does include
greater integration of new technology, our priority to be to first ensure that
we have an efficient and effective system of funding.
Edumkashun in Utah and elsewear in the untied states is dooin jest fine with are
currant leaderships. We donut need no new, non-teacher gumming things up.
mhenshaw:I like your reasoned response. I hope you know I was being
sarcastic about the Ward Churchill part. As for vanceone, I can't speak
I weep for education in this state as it is. If Lockhart gets this, I think
I'll have a full on temper tantrum. For a state that claims to be for
children, Utah has a really bizarre way of showing it.
For a traditional Republican to be so soundly condemned by a Democrat in Utah
should probably be considered as a high mark of distinction.
If Becky gets the job it clearly shows how our leaders prioritize education.
She has no managerial or educational experience but is well connected to the
political elite and the right wing radicals in the State. Wanting, coveting,
craving power are not a qualifications for the job. Those are attributes in a
politican not an educator.
Those who oppose public education such, as "half the Utah Legislature"
have consistently been shown to have financial ties to either private education,
On-line education, or technology companies that sell to the schools.The
push by the legislature and many citizens to denigrate teachers and
De-professionalize the teaching profession is hurtful to Utah Education. Too
many people think they are educators or know about education because "hey I
attended school once". Read some research, practice critical thinking, and
actually become involved in our schools before you claim to know how to manage
or fix the system. Also, the idea that all who oppose the privatization
for profit of education, and allowing an antagonistic politician to head the
state school board are somehow liberal, leftist, radicals is ridiculous.Furthermore what exactly is with the push that somehow business people or
business models would do better? Yes if education is about a profit. (Well
maybe, lots of businesses fail). Has not Enron, the economic crash, scandal
after scandal taught us about the pitfalls of business. Yea, that's who I
want running my schools. (From a conservative white Male, Not that it should
The article is not a political attack.
Public education needs to be led by someone with experience, not someone whose
aspirations to be Governor got derailed and treats the position as a consolation
>>Or maybe he's just Ward Churchill...He's neither
a Ward Churchill nor a radical "to the left of Mao"; and even if that
were true, ad hominum attacks are logical fallacies and therefore not an
effective rebuttal to his arguments.I took several classes from Dr.
Davis when I was a student at the Y some years ago. He's calm, thoughtful,
rational, and an excellent analyst and instructor. While our political
philosophies differ, my experiences with him in and out of the classroom have
shown me that his positions and opinions are always well-reasoned and worth
Very surprised the the Deseret News would run this piece and give it "front
page" status on its online version. Personal attacks are not allowed in the
comments section - not sure why it's allowed in an article that one could
reasonably assume is endorsed by the Deseret News.To be clear,
I'm no fan of Ms. Lockhart and believe she consistently demonstrates a
politics first attitude. But it seems disingenuous to vilify her specifically
for the school board position in the fear that she might aspire to a higher
Every reason Davis gives opposing Ms. Lockhart is actually a reason to support
her. The education establishment is saddled with a "group think"
paradigm based on education concepts from a century ago. Many are certainly
still valid, but many are no longer applicable. More importantly,
the education industry in the country and in Utah is dominated by left leaning
unions who seem to be more interested in their own welfare and tenure than in
education of children. (Although our classroom teachers mostly do a superb job,
despite the dubious benefits of layers of bureaucracy.)Lockhart's experience in the legislature, especially as Speaker, is
actually superb management background, as well as demonstrated leadership,
budgetary expertise, and understanding of how all the pieces of the state
bureaucracy, business and education mesh. These are skills not learned in
academia, or in education courses.Lockhart will ask "why"
and "why not" and "how can this be better" instead of insisting
"we have always done it this way."Our kids deserve
innovative leadership, not cronyism of career educators.Go Becky!
How many sane boards of directors would hire as CEO a person with no
qualifications and demonstrated hostility to their organization? But
then the state board just hired as interim CEO a Seminary teacher whose wife is
suing the organization.Sounds like Ms. Lockhart has a lock on the
job. Irony of the week.
Yes, when I think democrat liberal activist, I think BYU. For sure.But chances are Mr. Davis is a conservative, perhaps a moderate conservative
with some common sense who is looking out for our children in a sincere way.Or maybe he's just Ward Churchill...
Dear Play by the Rules... I'm a republican and couldn't agree more
with this op-ed piece. Hallelujah Amen
Seeing the byline here makes me want to support Lockhart more, just because
Davis is to the left of Mao. The real reason Davis opposes Lockhart
is found in the latter part of the column: she's not UEA friendly, and she
probably won't jack taxes through the roof to dump ever increasing amounts
of cash on unionized teachers that don't really teach. The last thing we
need to do is throw more cash down the rabbit hole. The US spends
more money on education than any other country. And what do we get for it?
Failing schools, students, and incredibly wealthy liberal interest groups. Until Education is split from the Democratic Party slush fund, there's no
point in spending more cash. It all goes to protect pedophiles anyway. Just
ask New York and California, who have teachers they pay to sit in a room all
day, because they are too dangerous to be around kids, yet they cannot be fired
because of unions.
The reason that Utah Schools have a $500 MM underfunded Other Post Employment
Benefit is because "educators" have pretended to have business
backgrounds. This is a staggering amount and UEA is ignoring it. Wake up Utahns.
This is the same reason dozens of school districts around the country have
declared bankruptcy. Utah Retirement System is also in bad shape.
The state board should be headed by an educator, not by a politician.
Becky Lockhart has no qualifications for the job. One should not use a
leadership position in the legislature to gain another state job.
Great column by Richard Davis.Lockhart's husband has been a
lobbyist for technology firms, which is part of the reason Lockhart pushed a
half-baked idea to flood our schools with technology, while leaving other parts
of education - such as class size and support for teachers - to atrophy. With her husband's role in pushing technology, the size of this
conflict of interest is far too large to ignore. It would be like the
Superintendent's spouse being a building contractor specializing in the
construction of schools, or maybe being the sales representative for portable
classrooms.After Lockhart's speech slamming Governor (and
fellow Republican) Herbert as an "Inaction Figure", her bombastic style
reveals unbridled political ambition. The very last thing we need
is more politicization in education.
Brick and mortar schoolhouses are going to become a thing of the past in the not
so distant future. The Superintendent needs to be someone who can think outside
the box and bring innovation to education. Whether that be Lockhart or someone
else...the writing is on the wall. The internet is changing the way of
everything including education. We should accept it with an attitude of
Those liberal political science professors really have all the answers
The author's strong opposition makes me wonder if Lockhart would actually
do a good job.
The Deseret News can do better than political hacks, and should'I have just been convinced that Becky Lockhart is an Ideal candidate for State
School Superintendent. I'm persuaded we need to separate the statist
UEA/NEA stranglehold of institutional secular education and replace it with
people who care about more than themselves and the extorted money they receive
from the legislature.
Completely agree. She's not, in any sense, qualified for the position.
Which means, she'll probably get the job.
Typical hit piece by a democrat activist.
An issue well addressed by Mr. Davis! He is correct; Lockhart is one of the
last that should hold that position! Lockhart being just another oportunistic
politician, looking for a well paying stepping stone, with minimum qulifications
required of a Superintendent of Education. IMO there are literally
hundreds more qualified living in the state!