Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Howler Ravished by Ravitch

The Daily Howler, who taught in Baltimore for many more years than Michelle Rhee, did a 4 part series on Ravitch which is very critical from a certain point of view. He posits the question: if Ravitch was wrong once, who is to say she isn't wrong again? Lots to digest here and I don't necessarily agree, but I'm making it available all in one place for people to peruse and criticize. His final conclusion is certainly worth pondering:

Long ago, we liberals quit on this topic. We left the field to conservatives, to business types, to “educational experts.” (We left the field to Wendy Kopp!) Those people actually seem to care. Your side is AWOL, uninvolved.

I've been pondering this idea about the UFT/AFT. Shanker abandoned "this topic" when he supported the Nation at Risk in '82, backed the Clinton Goals 2000 in the 90's and after his death when the Feldman/Weingarten team supported NCLB. In other words, fighting for full funding for public education instead of looking towards market-based low-cost gimmicks like incentives. Looking at outcomes rather than incomes for solutions. Take a look at Rolan Fryer's mea culpa at John Thompson's post at TWIE where Fryer says, " "’To my surprise, incentive programs that rewarded process seemed to be more effective than those that rewarded outcomes." DUHHH!

The battle for real ed reform from teacher unions ended almost 30 years ago, leading them down the path of trailing the ed deformers. And yes, there was a Ravitch/Shanker alliance through much of this standards/accountability process.

Read it all at Howler on Ravitch

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