Education adequacy is becoming distorted

Published 12:27 am Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A deep complexity has long existed among educators, administrators, and even courts when seeking to determine educational adequacy. This complexity is ever-growing as the United States economic system continues to plunge into an abyss of financial cutbacks, opposition to President Obamas economic plan, and rising living expenses.

The declining economy is causing adequacy in education to becoming more and more distorted from state to state. Alabama residents must remain vigilant as the state attempts to fund education sufficiently in the midst of chief cutbacks nationwide.

Author Regina Umpstead, author of “Determing Adequacy: How Courts Are Refining State Responsibility for Educational Finance, Goals, and Accountability,” notes that many state court decisions around the country have found their states educational systems to be inadequate to meet their constitutional duties.

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Umpstead further notes that various factors affect the definition of adequacy from state to state; it is often difficult to come to a consensus. “Evidence such as this leads one to wonder where our very own state of Alabama lies when it comes to the matter of adequacy.”

Unfortunately, Alabama falls prey to the very same factors that promote inadequacy around the country. Such factors include insufficient numbers of trained teachers, overcrowded classrooms, and shortages of school staff. In addition, other factors related to declining adequacy include insufficient educational supplies, scant classroom equipment, limited course offerings, and school buildings that are in disrepair and/or lackbasic necessary components.

Alabama citizens are urged to examine the areas of funding, goals, and accountability to determine if educational reform is needed.

Administrators across our great state have the immense task of defining and/or refining district goals and accountability records in the hub of a sinking economy.