August 16, 2022

Mika Brzezinski introduced this well-meaning but shallow segment about a critical teacher shortage across the country.

"While the days of mask mandates and remote learning may mostly be behind us, it's still not quite business as usual. As many school districts don't have enough teachers. NBC News's Kerry Sanders has the latest," she said.

"It's back to school for students, but not for some teachers who are leaving the profession in record numbers. Schools nationwide are struggling to find qualified teachers, a problem exacerbated by the pandemic," Sanders said.

"You're talking about, you know, dealing with more hassles, more frustration, more depression, more anxiety, for the same amount of pay."

"An estimated 300,000 public schoolteachers and staff left the field between February 2020 and May 2022. A recent survey of teachers found almost 80% say they're dissatisfied with their working conditions. Almost half saying they're very dissatisfied. One study found 55% of educators are seriously considering ending their careers earlier than expected. Parents are concerned," Sanders said.

"The education secretary telling C-SPAN that salaries and respect for teachers have been too low for too long.

"You could have a masters degree, and you have to drive Uber on the weekends to make ends meet. That's unacceptable," he said.

Then the segment goes on about the shortage in Florida.

Now, let's be clear. In the Southern states, especially Florida, the shortage is self-inflicted. Allowing right-wing groups like Moms for Liberty to dictate school curriculum has real consequences. How many jobs can survive when you allow uninformed, ideological consumers to micromanage every decision?

But DeSantis wants to be president, and wants something to show those right-wing billionaires.

Other Republican governors are also executing the longtime right-wing plan to underfund and weaken the public school systems, with the ultimate goal of replacing them with publically-funded private charter schools -- especially white Christian schools. (Remember, the movement began in response to school integration.)

Wajahat Ali in the Daily Beast:

Through “school choice,” Republicans are like arsonists who deliberately burn down your community school, and then have the shameless audacity to turn around and say, “Wow, your schools are really terrible. Here, let me sell you on my equally crappy school instead.”

For Republicans who want to privatize education, the majority of America’s children are ultimately the inevitable casualties who must be sacrificed to achieve their cultural agenda, which isn’t about choice—but is instead about entrenching right-wing power, control, and Christian nationalism.

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