5 thoughts on “Dittos

  1. Charter schools simply convert public money into private profits; that’s the keystone to NCLB, too. Billions of tax dollars — mandated — to testing firms and tutoring companies. In Virginia, tutoring companies hire the teachers from the failing schools to tutor those kids on Saturdays. It’s all about the money. That’s why NCLB will remain, fundamentally, unchanged. The spice must flow….

  2. This week I’ve had a double-dose of how much NCLB distorts education. My kid’s middle school changed the schedule today: for the next six weeks, all classes have been shortened so an hour test-prep class in math and reading can be added. (writing isn’t tested this year so no one cares if the kids can write). That’s almost 16% of the instructional school day, not an insignificant amount.

    There’ll be two or three days of testing, then the rest of that week it’s movies and pizza all day because everyone needs to decompress. That’s followed in turn by five weeks of something very similar to senioritis, even though it’s only sixth grade. THE TESTS are over, and so is everyone’s motivation.

    Last night I went to the Junior High orientation for parents. There’s an entire year-long class dedicated to pushing up the reading scores of anyone who they think isn’t scoring high enough (in addition to regular Language Arts). This reading class is a canned curriculum (the teacher gets a script and a lot of the activities are on-line) and it’s pure test prep. Read something, fill in some bubbles. Read a little more, fill in some more bubbles. The kids who take this class can’t take a foreign language or one of the electives like shop or cooking. Their junior high experience is focused on coloring in little circles.

    Most of the people in blogtopia seem either too young or too old to have kids in public school, so education issues like NCLB and charters don’t usually get the attention they should.

  3. What never ceases to amaze me is how so many of America’s movers and shakers fall for ideas that are patently flawed – like charter schools or tax cuts. It takes them DECADES to figure out what someone with actual intelligence can dope out on the spot…

    Big mmmmmmm…..

  4. Ohio mom…

    I have a 17 year old, and there are too many days where he says he watched movies in school. Recently, his English teacher showed DONNIE DARKO… an interesting movie, yes… but how it relates to English literature is beyond me… But these video weeks do seem to correspond to testing weeks… apparently all learning stops when it’s time for testing…

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