Wednesday, March 3, 2010

'Accountability ... was not raising standards but dumbing down the schools'

The New York Times has an article that covers similar territory that the Washington Post wrote about last week and that I blogged about here.

It's about the one-time Reagan-Bushies' acolyte, Diane Ravitch, who can be blamed for the crazy excessive testing going on in public schools thanks to No Child Left Behind.

Even Ravitch's former colleague, and now fierce critic of hers, Chester E. Finn Jr., concedes she has some points to make.

From the Times: “Standards, in many places, have proven nebulous and low,” Finn writes in a coming essay. “ ‘Accountability’ has turned to test-cramming and bean-counting, often limited to basic reading and math skills.”

The Times' article is headlined: "Scholar’s School Reform U-Turn Shakes Up Debate."

I'll say. It's about time.

“Nations like Finland and Japan seek out the best college graduates for teaching positions, prepare them well, pay them well and treat them with respect,” she said in the Times' piece. “They make sure that all their students study the arts, history, literature, geography, civics, foreign languages, the sciences and other subjects. They do this because this is the way to ensure good education. We’re on the wrong track.”

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