Once upon a time, an evil leader decided to begin to destroy public education. The evil leader created a mandate called “No child left behind”. The evil leader provided $0 for funding for this mandate, instead passing costs on to states and local districts. The evil leader also mandated testing for all and conveniently had a family publishing business ready to prepare both the texts and tests. That is why, boys and girls, that all textbook adoptions follow the state of Texas’ choices, the publisher lives there!
Soon it become clear to all who worked in education that this mandate had sucked all the joy out of teaching; that it had made teachers teach a test, not a curriculum that prepared students for critical thinking, reading, writing and math. It prepared them to take a test….nothing more.A cloud of sadness set in over the teachers as they begged to be allowed to do what they do best, teach and nurture learners. A break in the clouds appeared in 2008 when a new leader was elected. This leader has not fixed the problems complete but did allow states to opt out of the absurd, one-size-fits-all requirements of NCLB.But the evil doers were not done. As schools struggled to make do with insufficient text books, materials and technology, another evil doer came into the forefront, touting “charter” schools and vouchers as the way to better education. This evil doer is part of the family that started the systematic destruction of public education.
This story is not over yet……the ending is not yet written. Pick the ending you desire.
Ending A: public schools are fully funded and teachers are allowed to teach lifelong skills.
Ending B: charter schools and private school vouchers will usher in a return of segregation, only this time it will be the poor and those with special needs who will be sent to public schools and the wealthy to the others.