If you haven’t spent the last couple of weeks in a bubble, you know that public school teachers across the country are taking to the streets to demand more funding.
In Oklahoma, the teachers-led campaign has turned into a televised battle, with hundreds of schools across the state being closed while teachers march to the state’s Capitol. In their quest for more taxpayer money, teachers are demanding $150 million to fix the schools, replace old textbooks, and give them and supporting staff higher salaries.
But before the massive strike hit the news, a private organization was able to mobilize donors to help fund 221 projects in Oklahoma City public schools alone.
Raising $29 million from one single donor, the San Francisco-based technology company, DonorsChoose.org helped 196 teachers in Oklahoma City to get ahead of the game without having to rely on public funding.
So far, the organization has already helped to raise $2.6 million for Oklahoma City schools alone which reminds us that when it comes to getting things done, we cannot just wait for government to act.
But while Mary Melon, the president of the Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools, said she’s grateful that schools are getting this boost from private donors, she still thinks the state must do more.
Of course, with schools falling apart and kids falling behind because of a lack of funding, the first reaction of many was to try and press the government for more. But if teachers, who are at the forefront of this battle, do not want to dig deeper to look for the solutions to the actual problems at hand, they will continue looking for a solution that does not answer their problems.
As DonorsChoose.org made it clear, people will step up and help kids if needed.
Long before governments tried to take the place of charities, privately-run organizations already provided education to the poor. With the development of the internet, access to education has never been so widespread and yes, affordable. There’s no excuse to keep thinking that if government schools weren’t around, kids would be uneducated.
In fact, people would have more to invest in social entrepreneurship and donate to charities like donorchoose.org if their earnings weren’t being expropriated through IRS taxation.
If we had the freedom to actually keep what we earn, then perhaps, more private charities would be able to step in and take over, putting an end to the government monopoly that is the public school system.