Since 1980, the United States federal government has increasingly monopolized education in this nation by way of the federal Department of Education (DoE) and its resultant education-industrial complex. In these past 32 years (excluding 2013), the department has burned through annual expenditures at a clip totaling – (wait for it) – $1,314,812,506,000!
So what has a generation and nearly $1.5 trillion bought us? Apparently this treasure and time has purchased the same things that centralized government monopolization always procures: inefficacy, bloated inefficiency, and in many cases an outright regression of outcomes. According to new global testing results compounded by the international Organisation for the Economic Cooperation and Development and released earlier this week, American adults – not just our children any longer – lag behind international contemporaries in basic mathematics, reading, and technological problem solving skills and criteria. Particularly troubling are some of the findings associated with the 25- to 34-year-old demographic, the ages that are most directly attributable to the DoE’s existence and policies.
Incidentally, yearly funding for the DoE peaked in 2006 under President George W. Bush at just over $100 billion (just in case anyone is misled into believing that Big Government is a partisan objective).