Sunday, February 14, 2010
Ed Notes Retro, Oct. 2003: We know it is going to be a disaster
When this was printed in Ed Notes over 6 years ago, most of the information we had came from George Schmidt in Chicago. Recent actions on the part of the UFT make it seem they just discovered this. But they knew all along and purposely did not educate the members as to what was coming. Even their recent "it's Klein mismanagement" campaign is part of their obfuscation of the national issues. The AFT, which is controlled by the UFT, is ready willing and able to make deals with the ed deformers. Some people think things have changed with a new leadership. Just watch what the AFT does in July in Seattle when the 800 members of NYC's Unity Caucus go there and vote as one to endorse every single policy of Randi Weingarten.
One of the successes of the resistance is that this story that was getting out to such few outlets 6 years ago is seeping into the mainstream. Note how many people at the Jan. 26 PEP meeting used so much of this terminology.
We know it is going to be a disaster
by Norm Scott
Some are comparing it to a hostile corporate takeover. But then George Schmidt has been warning us for years from Chicago about the impact of the corporate model and its companion, Mayoral control on a school system: That the top down corporate business model of running a school system with people who don’t have a clue about what goes on in a real school will never work. That control of education in the hands of politicians instead of educators leads to manipulation of the educational process for the purpose of winning elections. That attempts will be made to privatize. That blame would be placed on teachers for the problems. (It certainly can never be the fault of their faulty policies or the fact that some kids are really difficult to teach). That enormous funds would be put into staff development as a result of this philosophy instead of focusing on class size reduction (the “bad teachers will still be bad whether they have 35 or 10 in a class” argument.) That enormous numbers of high salaried “Executives,” many of whom are educational theorists or corporate bottom-line types, would be hired to “manage” the system. That there would be a shut down of information, a gag order on all employees and a system of lies and manipulation of data to put a good face on all that is happening. That employees will show their bosses the so-called “Potempkin Villages” where the face of things are made to look good (see: stress on bulletin boards) while the decay underneath is covered up. That kids would be pushed out of schools to make results look better. That dropout rates will be hidden. That test scores would be emphasized to the exclusion of all other learning like science and social studies...
Ed Notes, October 2003