State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Randy Dorn, is recommending that the legislature delay, yet again, the "pass the math test" requirement for high school graduation. See this news story in the Seattle Times.
The Times, in this editorial, complains that this delay "lowers the bar". Instead of delay, they write that "The Legislature must exchange Dorn's plan for one that does something for students. A better effort would include more experienced math teachers and up-to-date textbooks. After-school tutoring, summer school and other ways are needed to give students more lesson time. Science must be injected into core curricula with all the teacher training and other resources required to place science on par with reading, writing and arithmetic."
Ah, the idealism of the Seattle Times. It's refreshing, if naive. They are, of course, correct. But so what? The legislature is not going to pony up any money to pay for these proposals. So after all of the adults who are actually responsible for the education system fail to fulfill their responsibilities: the legislature, the OSPI, and the various district leaders, the Times believes that the solution is to hold the students accountable. The students, the only people in the system with absolutely NO power to influence it, are the only ones who are held responsible for the system's failure. The legislature underfunds the schools, the OSPI directs schools to miseducate students in math, the districts miseducate students in math and fail to implement early and effective interventions, and who pays? The students. Not only are they denied an education, they are denied diplomas.
If when it comes to graduation requirements Randy Dorn blinked, as the Times wrote, then he is willingfully squeezing his eyes shut when it comes to confronting the failures of the adults in the system.