Rhode Island And High Stakes Testing


Another In A Series Of Appliance Posts

Look at that fucking faucet!  Awesome, right!
You have read about my oven, dishwasher, and assorted  laundry machines and machinations. I just wanted you to know that I had to install a new kitchen faucet yesterday.

I can do light plumbing.  Hell, I remodeled the half bath when I bought the place.  I ripped out the old vanity and toilet and replumbed and replaced them.  Copper pipe and flux don't scare me.  And torches (fire, not light you Brits) are just plain cool.

The fancy faucet I bought (almost just like the one in the picture) was actually pretty easy to install and only cost $150.  The only issue was getting my less than agile body under the sink and getting leverage to remove and replace the 40 year old water lines and shut-offs coming from the wall.  It was most uncomfortable.  But worth it.

The old faucet was so gunked up that is sort of dribbled instead of flowed.  I replaced it not because of weak flow but because a tiny hole had manifested on the top of the spout and a fine mist would spray out whenever the faucet was on.  I couldn't stand wiping everything down after using the sink each time, so I broke down and bought the new faucet, knowing it would hurt to put it in.  Ok, it was just uncomfortable.  I'm not that much of a wimp.

The new faucet is amazing.  First, it's stream can reach every corner of the sink, and look good doing it.  Second, the stream is not weak.  It is strong.  So strong, that the first time I turned it on to check for leaks, I thought there was one because the powerful stream, not unlike Bridalveil Falls, spewed water everywhere because I had a lid in the sink that perfectly redirected the test-stream up and all around.  I had to crank down the shut-offs to reduce the power of the stream.  Oh, such a wonderful problem.

Friday Bonus Cartoon Fun: *Crickets* Edition: Updated


Friday Cartoon Fun: Pre-Existing Conditions Edition

Quote Of The Day: USM Special Ops Are "Protectors Of The Christians" Edition

"What I'm really talking about is how eight or nine neoconservative, radicals if you will, overthrew the American government. Took it over. Many of them [key branches of the U.S. military are being led by Christian fundamentalist "crusaders" who are determined to "turn mosques into cathedrals."] are members of Opus Dei. They do see what they're doing...it's a crusade, literally. They see themselves as the protectors of the Christians. They're protecting them from the Muslims [as in] the 13th century. And this is their function."
Seymour Hersh via Foreign Policy


Wednesday Cartoon Fun: I'll Pay You Back Edition

Bill Gates Is The Secretary Of Education -- He Bought It

Who says the foundations (and Gates, in particular) don’t set government policy?

On October 9, 2009, Edward Haertel, chair of the National Research Council’s Board on Testing and Assessment (BOTA) sent a letter-report to Arne Duncan to express BOTA’s concern about the use of testing in RTTT’s requirements.
Tests often play an important role in evaluating educational innovations, but an evaluation requires much more than tests alone. A rigorous evaluation plan typically involves implementation and outcome data that need to be collected throughout the course of a project.
REFLECTING “A consensus of the Board,” the nineteen-page letter went on to review the many scientific studies that demonstrate the pitfalls of using standardized test scores as a measure of student learning, teacher performance, or school improvement. BOTA recommended that the DOE use these studies to revise the RTTT plan. Unfortunately, as Haertel explained in his cover note, “Under National Academies procedures, any letter report must be reviewed by an independent group of experts before it can be publicly released, which made it impossible to complete the letter within the public comment period of the Federal Register notice [for RTTT’s proposed regulations].” The scientists needed a peer review of their work, so they missed the Federal Register deadline, and that meant Duncan could ignore their recommendations—which he did. Haertel’s letter (www.nap.edu/catalog/12780.html) makes for poignant reading in the twenty-first century: science imploring at the feet of ideology. [emphasis mine]
Dissent (again)


Sargent Shriver, R.I.P.

Sargent Shriver, former director of The Peace Corps and vice-presidential nominee, has died at age 95.

Total Pageviews