"A child's learning is the funtion more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Friday, September 23, 2005

Education Trust Advocates Testing into Pre-Kindergarten

hys·ter·i·a:
  1. A mental disorder characterized by emotional excitability and sometimes by amnesia or a physical deficit, such as paralysis, or a sensory deficit, without an organic cause.
Just when you thought the testing hysteria might be peaking, here come the "child advocates" at Education Trust to kick it up a notch with their endorsement now of pre-K testing. Not only kindergarten, you see, but pre-kindergarten, also. Writing now for the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation's appropriately-titled online rag, Fwd: Arresting Insights in Education, Amy Wilkins, Principal Partner of Education Trust, props up Jeb Bush's veto of the pre-K bill in Florida earlier this year--on the basis that it did not include the proper "accountability" provisions. Here is part of her arrested insight on ending the "achievement gap" of 3 year olds:
One way for the state to address these issues
is through an accountability system that uses
disaggregated student achievement data and
considers achievement growth as well as
whether students meet the school readiness
goals. Such a system would assess children’s
skills as they enter the pre-K program and
again when they enter Kindergarten. Testing
at both ends of the program would allow the
state to gauge more accurately the effective-
ness of the program. Florida would have to
establish target growth rates for various pop-
ulations—including more growth for low-
income children—if pre-Kindergarten is to
help all children meet uniform school readi-
ness goals.
Yes, uniformity. Think of it--if we can intervene at an earlier and earlier age to train these children to behave properly, to learn the Code while they are learning to de-code, and to also appreciate the second-class citizenship that they have inherited, then we can entirely avoid the root causes of poverty, racism, lack of opportunity--at the same time making these children and future soldiers entirely dependent upon and thankful for the dead-end jobs that we will provided them when they become "educated"--if they behave themselves.

If they don't, well, we have another institution for them, one that looks increasingly like the schools that the sorority sisters at Ed Trust would smilingly advocate as the best we can do at this time. Keep on the sunny side, always the sunny side, keep on the sunny . . .

1 comment:

  1. And if we follow that line of thinking to its inevitably (more) ridiculous extreme, we'll be testing pre-conception as well.

    On a linguistic note: if we "kick it up a notch" do we "Emerilize it"?

    ReplyDelete