Friday, January 1, 2016

Educators: what do they know and how long have they known it?

The New York Times recently told some ugly truths about education in America:

Politicians and educators have been using curriculum changes and easy tests to “hide how dismal their schools actually are and [mislead] families and students into believing that high school diplomas have value.”

Who’s going to say the plainer truth? I don’t hear too many voices of parents complaining that our pols and our school boards and our principals and our teachers and our teachers’ unions all know that the education of our children is declining, and they’re all conspiring to not talk about it with utter frankness, and they’re all conspiring to avoid actually fixing it.

Our elected leaders and the education establishment are successfully avoiding a stark admission of their failure. They’re covering it up so they don’t get the blame.

We all know how fundamental the problem is:
students who can’t do grade-level work are being “graduated” to the next grade every year, and finally they get a diploma
grade inflation—embraced by teachers and students and parents—has papered over the problem
helicopter parents have tirelessly pestered the schools and their kids for competitively superior evidence of high achievement, regardless of actual performance

The Times cited a high school with an 80 percent graduation rate. That’s a grotesque simulation of learning achievement, because 90 percent of the 11th graders in that school aren’t ready for college-level reading and 93 percent of them can’t do entry-level college math. They’re getting their high school diplomas, but they’re not getting a high school education.

We need to start calling this horror by its real name—a failure by educators—and point to the folks who aren’t earning their pay. Parents and students need to acknowledge that they don’t live in Lake Wobegon.

I’m fully convinced there are wonderful teachers and dedicated educators in every school district in America.

There aren’t nearly enough of them. The crushing reality is that even the good ones are participating in the cover-up.

I know there are a million specific rebuttals to my argument here.

Yet, the sweeping denial is false.

Copyright © Richard Carl Subber 2016 All rights reserved.

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