Who Will Be Accountable For Public Schools & Its Students In The Trump Government?

By Amanda Moore, Parent Herald January 05, 04:00 am
Most students in public school come from disadvantaged families and who rely on government funding for their education opportunities.
(Photo : Tim Boyle/Newsmakers via Getty Images)

America's new president, Donald Trump, is set to assume office in a few weeks. Since his win in the elections, education has been singled out as one sector that could experience big changes, particularly on the matter of public schools.

Liberals believe the government should advocate for students who are likely to have few opportunities in public education. This includes low-income families and rural households, minorities and special needs. If the federal government safeguards their interests and looks out for their welfare, then it's also accountable for the results.

Thus over the years, the federal government has set up reform programs geared for the improvement of disadvantaged students' plight in public schools. Public education has seen a big push under President Obama's administration, according to PBS. It is believed to be one of Obama's lasting legacy for the American people.

Some of these programs, however, failed in its goals. As a result, the accountability bore on the federal government. Hence, Congress stepped in to defund programs that saw little benefits or good results, as per U.S. News & World Report. This highlight why some are against federal government involvement in education because funds and efforts could be channeled in other areas of government service instead.

Those who are against it are mostly conservatives who believe that states and districts should decide on education. They prefer minimal involvement and intervention from the federal government, thus accountability is left up to the states, the district, the schools and to some extent, the parents themselves.

What this highlights is the importance of school choice for families. It also gives states and school districts much leeway in coming up with specific programs geared for its community, as opposed to generic federally-funded programs.

Such a stance, however, brings up concerns from those who believe that there should still be federal government involvement to provide oversight and balance, as well as protect and improve public schools. It's a common argument that President-elect Trump and his Education secretary of choice, Betsy DeVos, who are both from the conservative party, will give little importance to public education in favor of charters and vouchers, according to The Prospect.

There have also been talks of Trump doing away with the Education department's role in his government. This has been suggested many times in his election campaign. It opens up the big question of who would become accountable for these students whose families cannot afford charters and vouchers.

In effect, the worry is that disadvantaged public school students will likely become more disadvantaged with the new administration as no one will be looking out for their welfare. Do you believe that this will be the case? Talk to us in the comments!

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