“In the context of a severe recession, I feel like we’ve saved public education and its core mission in North Carolina from what could have been severe jeopardy,” That’s House Speaker Joe Hackney quoted in this morning’s Insider. I can’t say I agree with the speaker’s use of the word “saved”. It implies an action that is completed, or resolved. Has public education been “saved”? Local schools are just now learning how much money they will have for the coming school year. Budget reductions will most certainly result in some layoffs and program reductions. The downturn was the perfect opportunity for the General Assembly to thoroughly comb the K-12 education budget. Unfortunately, it didn’t. There are still too many noninstructional personnel (if you want to know more: click here) and questionable programs larding our school budgets. While nearly $1 billion in federal stimulus money is helping to protect services and jobs, it also works to stunt real reform and only delay important budget decisions. Did the General Assembly “save” public education? Think again.