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Posted on 2010.10.07 at 22:05
I don't think it's any secret that I despise politics and avoid them as much as possible. But what I learned about the politics in education yesterday really pissed me off. I knew about No Child Left Behind, have seen how the media always finds the poorest representation of educators and manages to paint it that teachers and schools do not want to be held accountable for student success, heard society place the blame solely on the schools while promoting lack of responsibility on parents and students for their own success. But this...is beyond me completely.

Each state decides what is "proficient" on its "standardized" tests. Thus, what is proficient in Mississippi is vastly different from what is expected in Michigan. Consequently, students are graduating "above proficient" in some states and cannot pass the ACT or a college entrance exam. Now I agree, motivating a student through parties and prizes is fails to increase student learning, what in the hell is this country's leaders thinking? How can they call a test that differs in every state standardized--especially when the level of "proficiency" is inexcusably low. So we are spending all this time testing for a pointless irrelevant measure of what some politicians, who often known little if anything about education, think students should know. And if the kids don't pass, the blame is solely on the teachers and they not only lose their job, they lose their career.

I'm not saying there aren't crappy teachers--there are and they should be fired. But that isn't the majority. Most everyone I've worked with agrees teachers should be held accountable for their teaching, but who is holding the students and parents accountable? Instead, as my father who didn't support me going into education said, "the schools are creating the environment the kids don't have at home so the students will learn and be motivated to succeed." A student's success depends upon the school, the student, and the family at home. There are good parents out there too, but more and more society is pushing everyone to place blame rather than to reflect upon what the problem is.

How is this legal?

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