This Bridge Should Be Burned
August 2, 2013
As our students go off to school later this month, what will be waiting for them? Will there be eager teachers ready to ignite our children’s fires of curiosity? Will there be books, lessons and curriculum designed to move our children to the top run of educational achievement on the planet?
The Failure of NCLB
Gone is the failed educational initiative we called “No Child Left Behind (NCLB).” After a decade of experimentation NCLB made our education system the laughing stock of first world nations as we witnessed an SAT decline of 30 points in reading comprehension scores. NCLB has been judged by nearly all to have caused irreparable harm to our children by doing nothing for learning while turning them into testing machines with seemingly endless standardized tests which subsequently replaced many previous days of legitimate instruction.
NCLB was based upon two guiding principles: (1) the premise that telling school officials that if their students did not pass “standardized” tests, which contained the statistical properties of little to no reliability or validity measures, that they would all lose their jobs and the government would take over their schools; and, (2) students would not graduate if they did not pass these bogus tests. In most of these standardized tests, the reliability measures between the test and the curriculum was not fully documented.
If a test does not contain measures of the various types of validity and reliability, you have no legitimate test. NCLB was nothing but nonsense. However there is one element, related to NCLB, namely, the introduction of “Zero Tolerance” policies, that has survived NCLB intact. This concept of unyielding Zero Tolerance philosophy is preparing our children to live in age where the only acceptable use of force is that which is applied by the government.
Just as Obamacare is preparing to right the wrongs of the managed healthcare industry, “Obamacore” promises to do the same in education. In reality, Obamacore will do for our children’s education what MERS has done for the sanctity and security of home mortgages.
The Obamacore that I refer to is formally labeled as Common Core. In this series, it will become clear that Common Core should be labeled as Communist Corps because this is, in essence, preparing to have our children live in a dumbed down society and to accept whatever edicts are thrown at them by those inhabiting the ivory towers.
Let’s begin our analysis of the new directions being taken by the educrats by first looking at a program, which survived NCLB and is walking in lockstep with a culturally dangerous and legally unconscionable program known as Zero Tolerance. Zero Tolerance is the authoritarian bridge between the failed NCLB and the new Common Core standards.