Disqus

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Get Congress Out of the Classroom?

This op-ed piece appeared in yesterday's NY Times by Diane Ravich, a professor of education at NY University and former assistant secretary of education for research from 1991-1993.

Her take is that:

The main goal, as stated, of NCLB, all children in the US will be proficient in reading and math by 2014, is just not possible.

"Given that no nation, no state and no school district has ever reached 100 percent math and reading proficiency for all grades, it is certain that the goal cannot be met. Perpetuating this unrealistic ideal, however, guarantees that increasing numbers of schools will “fail” as the magic year 2014 gets closer."

Also, she believes the roles should be reversed for state and federal governments. To wit:

"The federal government is good at collecting and disseminating information. The states and school districts, being closer to the schools, teachers and parents than the federal government, are more likely to be flexible and pragmatic about designing reforms to meet the needs of particular schools."

Last, she believes that states, under tremendous pressure from NCLB, make claims upward of 80%+ on their state tests but the federal assessment (NAEP) shows otherwise.

"We will never know how well or poorly our students are doing until we have a consistent national testing program in which officials have no vested interest in claiming victory."

3 comments:

Dan Dempsey said...

What a concept a reality check for NCLB.

David Berliner's co-authored book:
How High Stakes Testing Corrupts America's Schools

Somebody is getting a clue. How long until it reaches the ruling oligarchy?

Anonymous said...

... when 1 of the ruling oligarchy's kids fails the WASL.

Anonymous said...

That'll never happen. Their kids are probably in private schools.