Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Schooling the Public

New York Times. Column on education. A few of my thoughts:
Between 2004 and last year, scores for young minority students increased, but so did those of white students, leaving the achievement gap stubbornly wide (emphasis mine)
I'd like to see the 'but' changed to an 'and'. Is that not what we want as a society? Minorities scores increased? Great! White kids (majorities??) scores increased? Equally great. Why is it a bad thing that the white kids had improved scores as did the minority students? Had the minority students' scores improved and the white kids' scores worsened, would the NY Times be celebrating this fact? I find the connotations of this sentence troubling. I know the point of No Child Left Behind is to close the gap, but I don't think we want that gap to be closed at the expense of one group versus the other.
The results point to the long-term crisis in many of the nation’s high schools, and could lead to proposals for more federal attention to them in the rewrite of the No Child law
Let me get this straight. The results of a federal public schooling program have been lackluster and disappointing, so the answer is for proposals to do more? I personally would love to see more responsibility to be delegated to the states and cities. I'm also of the flavor that advocates giving vouchers to parents and letting them decide where to send their kids. I think this is the most disgusting position the Democrats maintain. If we were serious about helping improve the prospects of general elementary education, we be open to radical reformation of the system. Innovative, entrepreneurial and varied. Hopefully Obama is as brilliant of a politician as some claim him to be. I'm praying that he's keeping the Teachers Union on his side to get re-elected in '12, then saying 'Screw You and your monopolization of the system and abject failure under that monopoly; I'm going to truly help our school system by doing some crazy shit with Arne Duncan'.

I've rambled and gotten off topic. I'm done.

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