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Q: Where Has All the Education Gone? A: Left Behind on Bumper Stickers.

Posted By: Dick Schutz on January 31, 2012
The pre-collegiate education sector has a short memory, and what it has isn't very good.

NCLB was a step in the Standards and Standardized Tests history. It began in 1989 when a small number of Fed educrats convinced Bush I to invite the Governors to an Education Summit at which they agreed that Standards were the route to educational improvement.

This was followed by Goals 2000 legislation in 1994. However, 2000 came and none of the goals had been met--not even close. No problem; no one will remember.

Meanwhile, research sponsored by the NSF had generated a "New Science of Reading." By using "programs based on scientifically-based research" we could move beyond "the soft bigotry of low expectations" and teach all students to read by the end of Grade 3--No child would be left behind. However, that didn't happen--not even close.

In every poll conducted since polling began in the 1970's "education" ranks among the highest domestic priorities of the citizenry. It has to; it's about our children, their future and the future of the country.

It seems to me likely that the reason "education" has not been a matter of debate in the Republican primaries and is unlikely to be an issue in the Presidential election, is that the Moderators don't know what questions to ask and the Candidates wouldn't have credible answers.

Bumper Stickers and sound bites are just not strong foundations for building education capacity. "Reform" with no re-form. "College and career ready" when anyone of post-secondary age is "ready" for a slot somewhere in the higher education system and there is high unemployment. "Turnaround with no turn-around." And on and on.

Your guess is as good as mind about what the future holds, but it seems to me that the "problem" is at the top of the EdChain, not at the bottom.
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 Q: Where Has All the Education Gone? A: Left Behind on Bumper Stickers. by Dick Schutz on January 31, 2012
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