The edu-industrial complex likes to tout their dedication to kids. This trumpeting of priorities can be found in mission statements, goals, educational theories... pretty much anywhere. Are kids REALLY the top priority?
I would argue it is impossible for kids to be the top priority. The entire system is designed to create and foster internal conflict. In theory, everyone associated with education would be working toward the common goal of always doing what is best for children. In practice, every hand in the cookie jar of education is eternally struggling for power, influence, or personal gain. The federal government, state government, local government, school boards, superintendents, building-level administrators, teachers, support staff, parents, unions, and business owners all work to secure their own interests, usually in the form of securing their livelihood. They're protecting their jobs.
This focus on job protection ultimately creates problems within the system simply because this focus supersedes what should be the real goal- doing what is best for kids.
If you work within the edu-industrial complex, start paying attention to the decisions made around you. You begin to see this unspoken focus on protecting jobs versus truly doing what is best for children.
For the really brave, start considering your own decisions. How many times do you make a decision that prioritizes your own employment over the welfare children?
Of course, it takes bravery to admit this as humans are very adept at justifying our actions. We're experts at relieving cognitive dissonance. Therein lies the problem- we're too good at convincing ourselves that our decisions really are in the interest of kids.