Monday, August 22, 2005

No Child Left Behind criticized

"No Child Left Behind" is a lofty, but unrealistic goal, as I have pointed out in earlier postings. All you have to have to keep from reaching the 100 percent success rate that American schools have to have by 2014 is one set of parents who don't care about their children's education, or one student who simply does not care.
Or it could be one teacher who is not qualified, or more likely, one student who is feeling under the weather on the day the high-stakes test is given.
An article in today's St. Louis Post-Dispatch notes that some states are challenging the provisions of the law and some are questioning the absolutely ridiculous grading system under which a school can fail if a small percentage of students comes up short.
For instance in the St. Louis area, one of the best schools did not meet the federal standards because its special education students' scores went down. In every other area, the school improved and, in fact, had higher test scores than many that were considered to be passing by the federal government.
Of course, No Child Left Behind is a winner for President Bush no matter what happens. If there are dramatic improvements in student scores, the president can take the credit. If the program fails, it is because those lazy, good-for-nothing public schoolteachers are not doing their job and the U. S. should consider installing an educational voucher system.
I can't recall ever meeting any lazy, good-for-nothing teachers, but don't get me started on the politicians who use teachers as punching bags to get elected or re-elected. Maybe if they had paid more attention when they were in class, we might be getting better legislation.

No comments: