Sunday, November 15, 2015

Susan Ohanian: Bias at the New York Times on Education Reform

Susan on NYT Common Core coverage:
Let’s start with the June 2010 article announcing release of the Common Core.[5] Longtime reporter and two-time Pulitzer Prize (for writing on Iran-Contra and drug trafficking in Mexico) reporter Sam Dillon declared that “The new standards were written by English and math experts convened last year by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers.” In the ensuing five years, Times staffers repeat this claim again and again, though no experts are named, other than Sue Pimentel. Dillon gives no clarification here. In actuality, Pimentel trained as a lawyer but is a Standardisto’s standardisto. She got her big start in Standards setting with a 1993 grant in from the Walton Family Foundation and was a co-founder of Standards Work. Her close connection with Achieve put her in prime position to write the Common Core standards in language arts.

This piece introducing the Common Core to America does not mention that the Common Core existed because of a hundred million or so from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Instead, for his opening description of the Common Core, Dillon called on the perennial Times favorite education go-to mouthpiece, Chester E. Finn Jr., here identified as “a former assistant secretary of education who has long called for national standards.”
More at Counterpunch:

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