Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Paul Moore Comments on Jay Mathews KIPP Love: He's Got It Bad


Looks like poor Jay Mathews will be the one to turn out the lights on the failed corporate effort to destroy the public schools. Sad to see a learned man cling to conceptions so thoroughly discredited by real life.

The Business Roundtable, which led the attack on public education is now deeply enmeshed in an existential struggle to save itself and the global economy. The CEO's have turned their public schools campaign over to the US government and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Duncan soldiers on with the corporate catechism. Charter schools are good, public school teachers are bad. He won't be able to do it but Duncan wants to use billions of the taxpayer's money to close inner-city public schools and make sure the bad teachers who work in them finally get their comeuppance.

But Duncan will fail just as the Business Roundtable, Gates, Broad, and the Waltons have failed because these forces have tried to hold back the tide of history. Ultimately, teachers will takeover the nation's public schools and dictate educational policy in the US. Those teachers will have to work through faux-unions like the WTU where figurehead George Parker simply carries out policies handed down by labor aristocrats like Randi Weingarten. But teachers will achieve that in time.

Ironically, when the teachers do run the schools, the "bad teachers" will be gone soon thereafter along with the standarized tests bad teachers love so. Their lips will have to be detached from administrators backsides across the country. The worst teachers love standardized testing and mindless data collection, they crave to be told what to do minute-by-minute in the classroom, they beg for rules to follow and rules to enforce. The worst teachers seek refuge from the classroom in administration. The worst teachers have a missionary mindset and spend a couple of years in an inner-city charter school like KIPP Ujima Village before they get on with their lives work.

The best teachers are in the classroom and in th eir unions by choice. They care for their students and want them to learn skills that will serve them in the real world, not useless test taking skills. They care for their fellow teachers and their own families and want good things for them. Concern for all the children causes good teachers to guide them away from becoming cannon fodder in wars for oil in Iraq or Afghanistan. Concern for all the children compels good teachers to guide them away from competition with Chinese children and Indian children and other children of the world to see who can work for less in sweatshops and farm fields. And good teachers do not lie to the children about success and a wonderful job in a failed global economy if they will just do well on some meaningless test. Good teachers do not lie to them, like they are lied to everyday now!

No comments: