Trump proposes merge between Department of Education and Department of Labor

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Trump proposes merge between Department of Education and Department of Labor

by Jarah Cotton, Editor

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This past June the Trump administration submitted an ambitious proposal aimed toward the reorganization of the federal government, in which they included a section calling for the combination of the Department of Education and Department of Labor into a consolidated Department of Labor and the Workforce. The administration claims that the merge was proposed with the intention to “bring together current workforce development programs and vocational education and higher education programs”, as stated in the proposal itself.

If this proposal makes it through the legislative branch and manifests in a manner consistent with the way that the administration has presented to the public, it has the potential to have positive implications for vocational education in America. However, the proposal as written is very loose, and they have not provided insight into what would be cut from each department, nor have they discussed any impact that this may have on students reliant upon the public education system.  This proposal may be an elaborate plot by the republican party to do away with the department of education – a goal they have sought since the departments inception. If this is the case, then the Administration’s actions are both unethical and against the nation’s best interests.

“The education department was originally created in the Jimmy Carter administration due to the inequities (of education) among the states,” Government and Politics Teacher Barbara Beyke said. “Some areas do not have the tax base to offer the opportunities available in other areas, so it was about the distribution of those resources.”

It is vital that there is a certain level of uniformity and transiency in our national education system, and if the department of education is abolished, or is shrunken so much that its effects are negligible, then that uniformity will be abolished with it. States will allocate their educational resources toward what students will need to know to be proficient in that state’s economy. With the ease of transportation and popularity of lifestyle transplants consistent with the modern era, though, such practices are inherently outdated.

The founding fathers granted states sole authority over education when most everyone was stagnant, and that was a system consistent with the times they experienced.  That is no longer acceptable. Children who live in more rural areas should not be set at a disadvantage simply due to their home state’s resources and priorities. All schools should adequately prepare students with a knowledge base sufficient to propel them into any field that they choose.

America is based upon the principle of equal opportunity. That concept would be totally forfeited if we adopted a policy of unequal, state-determined, education.

“Children are impressionable. They are naturally going to pick up what you put down,” Junior Shakira Thomas said. For you to limit them and only expose them to certain things is not fair.”

Conservative ideology leans more toward smaller government and only maintaining the administrative aspect of government directly tied to functionality. The combination and purging of the departments of education and labor, will likely translate into the cancellation of many of the their powers to help maintain this fairness. The fact that they have not openly stated specifically what about the two programs they intend to cut, is unethical, as they are playing on constituents’ ignorance, and hoping that they will blindly make their decisions.

In order to ensure that this policy is enacted in a way that is consistent with how the administration is trying to present it, that no crucial aspects are cut from either department and that they are merely consolidated into one, we must require that such stipulations are written into the actual legislation if this proposal is indeed passed. If they are not, then the legislation may be enforced at the current administration’s discretion, which would be both inefficient and inconsistent.

The purpose of the public school is to provide students with foundation necessary for success later in life. We must hold our administration accountable, as constituents, so that this proposal does not threaten this purpose.

“It is our hope any Federal proposals lead to better options for students,” said Cobb County Chief Strategy and Accountability Officer John Floresta.


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