With schools, Ho­gan used author­ity wisely

Baltimore Sun - - FROM PAGE ONE - Charles Herr, Perry Hall

In its most re­cent dis­agree­ment with Gov. Larry Ho­gan’s ex­ec­u­tive or­der re­gard­ing later school open­ing (“‘Silly’, ‘triv­ial,’ ‘stupid,’” Oct. 28), the true emo­tions and views of rep­re­sen­ta­tive gov­ern­ment of The Sun’s ed­i­to­rial board are re­vealed with their ed­i­to­rial’s petu­lant open­ing state­ment that “any­one who gives a damn” should read the res­ig­na­tion let­ter writ­ten by the state’s for­mer state school board vice pres­i­dent.

They then pro­vide the ar­gu­ment by the much-awarded physics pro­fes­sor, S. James Gates Jr., who ad­vises Pres­i­dent Barack Obama and who con­sid­ers Gover­nor Ho­gan’s edict “frightening” in its im­pact. Pro­vid­ing no sup­port­ing ev­i­dence or re­search, Mr. Gates opines that it has the “po­ten­tial” of harm­ing low-in­come stu­dents who may suf­fer learn­ing loss with schools open­ing later. I be­lieve Mr. Gates may have for­got­ten that the later open­ing will be ac­com­pa­nied by a later clos­ing, not a longer sum­mer repast nor loss of in­struc­tion days. The Sun has a prob­lem with the gover­nor chang­ing pol­icy with ex­ec­u­tive or­der, but I don’t re­call the board hav­ing is­sues with Pres­i­dent Obama do­ing so on a na­tional pol­icy scale as some courts have.

Then the edi­tors noted that a prior panel un­der Gov. Martin O’Mal­ley rec­om­mended the sched­ule change, though its “ed­u­ca­tors” were out­num­bered by par­ents, leg­is­la­tors and busi­ness lead­ers, not real peo­ple in the edi­tors’ eyes. They ex­pected a “leg­isla­tive re­sponse,” which failed to get out of com­mit­tee. The edi­tors say “this is how democ­racy works.” Navel gaz­ing in com­mit­tee is not how democ­racy works.

That’s ex­actly why, when Congress wouldn’t give him a bill, the pres­i­dent — and in this in­stance, the gover­nor — used their power to es­tab­lish pol­icy as the peo­ple’s elected chief ex­ec­u­tives.

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