Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Something Else- Not School Reform

When politicians and the corporate advocates (lobbyists) choose one set of policies over another, they make important decisions. When they select accountability ( testing, common core, PACT assessments) and market-based privatization they are selecting policies that enrich their benefactors, not policies selected to improve the school lives of children. They avoid policies based upon evidence based practices. Kevin Weiner, in Kappan says, “In doing so, politicians seem willfully ignorant of the direct connection between opportunity and achievement. Our national opportunity gaps lead inexorably to our achievement gaps. Yet the test-based accountability policies still advocated by politicians dis- regard the opportunity side of the equation. Capacity building and supports are relegated to a small footnote within a long diatribe about mandated performance.” Inequality in funding and resources have an effect on students’ experience of school: the ratio of students to teachers; the number of experienced teachers, the number and quality of books, and instructional materials; the condition of the physical plant. Most schools in low-income are in bad shape, the students are suffering, and the politicians and the corporate lobbyists are looking to make money off of “reforms efforts. “ See the video below- Protecting Public Education.
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