Following the money is usually a good way to see what is really motivating an education policy decision. Money and whiteness. The sad thing is these folks don't seem to realize how their policy ideas effect those inside the schools.
There is no quick fix because the problem, whatever the problem is, is not the fault of public education; it's the fault of society to adequately take care of those in need. I think its pretty clear that the "haves" have been having at the expense of the "have-nots" for so long that we are where we are now; a rich/poor society; very little in the middle.
The "poor" don't need better schools and teachers, they need better lives! Obama's tax plan, and health plan are a start. Not his education plan, or his punish the war criminals plan.
Anyway, follow some money...
NEA Joins Corporate Raiding Party on Public Education
Did I say something about union sellouts earlier today? Bracey just posted at ARN the Ed Week link below that announces the NEA, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the National Association of Manufacturers have split the spoils from the corporate charter school blitzkrieg that is now being unleashed against public education. They have agreed to support the Tucker Plan (Tough Choices or Tough Times) that was pumped out of the sludge tanks in 2006. See here and here and here for reviews of the plan. Here is the beginning of the evaluation by Miller and Gerson:The "Tough Choices or Tough Times" report of the National Commission on Skills in the Workplace, funded in large part by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and signed by a bipartisan collection of prominent politicians, businesspeople, and urban school superintendents, called for a series of measures including:The hounds are loose. Here is the news from Ed Week:
(a) replacing public schools with what the report called "contract schools", which would be charter schools writ large;
(b) eliminating nearly all the powers of local school boards - their role would be to write and sign the authorizing agreements for the "contract schools;
(c) eliminating teacher pensions and slashing health benefits; and
(d) forcing all 10th graders to take a high school exit examination based on 12th grade skills, and terminating the education of those who failed (i.e., throwing millions of students out into the streets as they turn 16). . . . .By Catherine Gewertz
The nation’s largest teachers’ union and two leading business groups said today they have become partners in the work of a blue-ribbon commission trying to revolutionize American education.
The announcement by the 3.2 million-member National Education Association, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the National Association of Manufacturers marks the next step in taking the ideas in a high-profile December 2006 report, “Tough Choices or Tough Times,” from proposals to practice. The report, by the New Commission on the Skills of the American Workforce, called for sweeping, systemic changes in education funding, assessment, school management, and teacher pay and training. ( "U.S. Urged to Reinvent Its Schools," Dec. 20, 2006.)
At a news conference here, leaders of the National Center on Education and the Economy , which sponsored the commission, also said that Arizona, Delaware, and New Mexico would begin the planning required to rework aspects of their education systems to reflect the commission’s framework. In doing so, the new states join Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Utah, which signed on to do likewise in October. . . .