If you live in an area where the public school system feels more like an employer than an institution of learning then this should sound familiar.
It’s no secret that public education’s institutional imperatives point toward more of everything, especially money. School systems are keen to mount programs for 4-year-olds, for instance, and (so long as they get the cash from local, state, federal or philanthropic sources) to run summer schools and extended-day programs, up to and including three meals a day for participants. Some of this is absolutely legitimate—an earnest effort to respond to the needs of children and families in their communities and to the academic-results-based accountability regimens of state and national governments. But some of it reflects the inexorable expansionism and unquenchable appetites of the public sector and its employees.
American public education is just like any other business that resists change in order to further its own interests.