Saturday April 19, 2014
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Having read what the nine candidates for the school board said about using student tests to evaluate teachers, I believe that each of them showed common sense in realizing that it is not an effective method.
It's too bad, however, that no one stood up and spoke what should be on all of their minds, namely that NCLB is NOT a program whose goal is to aid public education; it is a program whose goal is to destroy public education, turning it over to private industry.
Until we get rid of NCLB, which should be the goal of every person in this nation who cares about education, nothing will ever be right in our schools because it is NCLB itself that is wrong with our schools.
To begin with, there is no need for a program of any kind to "improve" our schools. There is not a nation on the planet which is doing as well as we are, and anyone who tries to tell you anything different is misusing the test scores from the TIMSS, the unbiased agency which does the testing, twisting the results to mean something they do not mean.
Let me explain--again.
International testing done as far back as we have had agencies to do such testing clearly show that different cultural and ethnic groups score well in different areas. That is a given. It proven. It cannot be denied. It also cannot be changed.
Take that fact and add to it another fact: Most nations of this world have a population which is composed almost entirely of a single cultural or ethnic group, but the United States does NOT.
Therefore, if a nation with a single ethnic or cultural group is tested, and that group happens to have an inborn--and unchangeable--super talent for the material on the test, then that group will do very well. However, if the United States is tested, with the mix of ethic and cultural groups we have, our averaged test scores cannot possibly achieve as high on the same test as a group which has evolved over millions of years to have that special talent.
So. How do we find out if we are teaching well? It is very simple. We test our students, but separate the scores according to ethnicity and cultural group, and THEN compare them.
Do you know what happens when that is done?
Right now, today, with schools exactly as they are, our Asians score higher than Asians in Asian nations. Our white Europeans score better than white Europeans in Europe. Our blacks score a whole lot better than blacks in black nations.
What more can you ask of our schools?
Does it make any sense to try to change the cultural and ethnic differences that more than a million year have created?
Of course not.
Asians are going to do better in some areas than anyone else, but if our Asian Americans do better than Asians back in their homelands, what more can anyone ask of our schools?
So. Get rid of NCLB. In the first place we do not need to improve our school because they happen to be the best in the world. In the second place, it is a phony program with an unacceptable goal.
Here is the proof that it is a phony program. Here is NCLB itself. Read it:
The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, Sec. 1111 (b)(F), requires that "each state shall establish a timeline for adequate yearly progress. The timeline shall ensure that not later than 12 years after the 2001-2002 school year, all students in each group described in subparagraph (C)(v) will meet or exceed the State's standards."
Did you catch on? No? Don't feel bad. Neither did the states when they signed on to NCLB. The catch lies in the phrase "adequate yearly progress" and how it is used by those running NCLB at the federal level.
Suppose the students in a school are behind the power curve when it comes to--say--reading. Suppose that you, as a techer, and the students as well, make a truly valiant effort and make a big leap forward this year. Wonderful! Kudos to you and the kids. But do you seriously believe that you could do that again next year? Or that you could go on year after year doing the same thing? For twelve straight years?
Impossible! No one can keep on improving forever. Sooner or later anyone must reach his maximum--and the people who wrote that requirement into NCLB knew full well at the time they wrote it that they were setting an impossible goal.
That's why NCLB is a phony program.
One more thing, to verify every word I have written about TIMSS scores, go to:
It is only one of about 10,000 sites which will give you this direct quote:
"Data for US students is further tracked for ethnic and racial groups, which can be tracked as the nation. As a whole, grade four students in the United States lagged the best Asian and European nations in the 2007 TIMSS international math and science test. However, broken down by race, Asian Americans scored comparably to Asian nations, European Americans scored comparably to the best European nations (although European nations aggregate their own result independent of race or origin). Hispanic Americans averaged 505, comparable to students in Austria and Sweden, while African Americans at 482 were comparable to Norway."
Tell me anything that is wrong with those numbers!!!!
We should be proud of our kids, and I mean proud of every ethnic group! Those number show that our kids and our schools are the best!
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