State Rep. Steve Hurst wants to do something about your summer vacation — he just doesn’t know what
The only place you are going to find a longer break than the one seen in education is the Alabama legislature, and I don’t think we are calling for them to take more days off.
Education issues are constantly top priorities in Alabama politics. Graduation rates, pay raises, tenure law, school start dates and even summer vacation can spur long conversations and contentious debates.
Recently, State Representative Steve Hurst (R-Munford) has been trumpeting a poll done by the Alabama Association of Camps that claims over 80% of respondents want the school year to start after Labor Day and end before Memorial Day.
How will this be accomplished? Hurst doesn’t know.
When asked what kind of plan he has in place to get this done, he doesn’t have a single clue.
Hurst also doesn’t think his “plan” would actually make education in the state better, which isn’t the problem he is addressing.
He is concerned about summer jobs, Alabama’s vacation industry and students who aren’t going to college.
During an interview Monday on WVNN radio’s “The Dale Jackson Show,” Hurst was asked about what he would like to do and how it would make things better.
He tersely responded, “I didn’t say it would get better, and you didn’t say it would get better, and the polls don’t say it’ll get better, what the polls say is it hasn’t improved.”
He also didn’t have a plan for what kind of fix he was looking for.
Statewide mandatory start dates? No plan.
Longer school days but less instructional days? No plan.
Elimination of fall break? No plan.
Community college training programs during the summer? No plan.
Technical school training programs during the summer? No plan.
What about kids below high school? No plan.
Do Alabama’s 3rd graders need to get their resumes ready? No plan.
It looks like this was not a well-thought-out policy roll-out. It was just an idea with a couple of end goals.
Those goals are longer summers, more vacation spending on Alabama beaches and more skilled employees for Alabama’s growing industrial base.
One of those is really important, but there is no plan to get more students who aren’t college-bound trained for new jobs.
I guess we will have to wait for the end of summer for an actual idea to be formed, but this doesn’t seem like an idea that will make our state’s education system better. And it doesn’t even seem like that is on the agenda here.