Saturday, August 24, 2013

Susan Ohanian: Liar! Liar! Pants on Fire! War on the New York Times Embrace of the Common Core

OHANIAN: Choose the best answer:The New York Times education coverage proves once again that  Cherry-picking is

a) the last refuge of scoundrels
b) the last refuge of the lazy
c) a) and b)
We must hold the press as accountable for bad reporting as they want teachers to be held accountable if not more so since bad reporting (NY Times on Iraq) leads to catastrophes.)

Susan is ever relentless -- note -- some people are giving me credit for writing stuff I post that others have written. I indent and often put the words of others in red.

THIS ENTIRE POST IS FROM SUSAN OHANIAN as she joins the crowd in savaging Bill Keller.


Funny this cartoon runs at the New York Times the same day as Bill Keller's outrageous ode to the Common Core, attacking all critics as wingnuts--and worse. 

Liar! Liar! Pants on Fire! War on the New York Times Embrace of the Common Core
by Susan Ohanian

AGHHHHHH! Well, at least New York Times editorial remains consistent, proving once again that you can lead a reporter to evidence but can't make him think. Keller was executive editor at the New York Times from 2003--2011, where he was a leading supporter of the Iraq invasion. Although he has since returned to his status as writer, he remains infected by the Times editorial bias on education policy. It seems significant that Keller's father was chairman and chief executive of the Chevron Corporation.

Keller employs a deliberate strategy of welding opponents of the Common Core with the lunatic fringe. Note that no progressive who opposes the Common Core is mentioned. No superintendent of schools opposing the Common Core is mentioned. No researcher opposing the Common Core is mentioned. No parent opposing the Common Core is mentioned.

Here are just a few of Keller's misrepresentations, fabrications, and downright lies:

  • the Common Core, a project by a consortium of states...
    *** Send in the $$$$$ Yes, states signed on. . . because a whole lot of Federal money was at stake; there was a lot of heavy arm-twisting coming out of the US Department of Education.

  • the Common Core was created with a broad, nonpartisan consensus of educators
    ***Liar! Liar! Pants on Fire!

    ***The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation dumped hundreds of millions into the creation of the Common Core.

    ***David Coleman and Susan Pimentel, Common Core chief architects and edupreneurs, are NOT educators.

  • The backlash began with a few of the usual right-wing suspects...
    ***Plenty of noted researchers and practicing educators--representing diverse pedagogies-- have spoken out against the Common Core. Just because the New York Times ignores them doesn't mean they don't exist. And just because it's convenient for the New York Times to call on the Thomas B Fordham Institute over and over and over and over for soundbites doesn't mean they're anything but a partisan shill masquerading as a think tank.

  • Bill Bennett, thoughtful Republican defends Common Core
    ***When Common Core defenders need this resurrection, you know they're in trouble.

  • When a reporter resorts to a Michael Petrilli quote in three different paragraphs, you know he isn't doing his homework.

  • When a reporter uses quotes from two different people at the same neo-conservative think tank, you know he lacks due diligence.
    ***Michael Petrilli: executive vice president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute

    ***Kathleen Porter-Magee: Senior Director of the High Quality Standards Program at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute

  • The claim: item picked "at random" from the Common Core. . .
    ***Cherry-picking is the last refuge of the scoundrels, especially when you announce that it's "at random." For starters, Keller doesn't mention that the Common Core dictates that ALL children read the same grade-level text--and if they can't read it, then they listen to the teacher or a partner read it, meaning kids reading below grade level are denied access to text they can read for themselves.

  • the Common Core leans on traditional methods that have proved themselves over time.
    ***Where's the beef? Show us the research supporting the use of New Criticism with kindergartners--or students in any other grade.

    ***Show us the research support for the training of students to abandon their voice and write like insurance salesmen.

  • The Core does call for schools across the states to deliver their lessons in the same sequence.
    ***Teaching as a lesson delivery system gets at the core of what's wrong with New York Times education coverage.

  • Keller's piece below:

    War on the Core

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