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

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Tierney and the Earthquake Under the School Voucher Formation

Prometheus 6 provides a good antidote to John Tierney's desperate scrambling in the Times to salvage his Party's school privatization crusade. Since the research study was whispered out last Friday showing private schools no better than public ones, and some religious schools much worse, Tierney has been marched out to announce a new rationale for vouchering America and crushing the public schools. No longer is school privatization about getting children out of failing schools and into better ones--it is now about saving American taxpayers money by giving a reduced amount of public dollars to private church schools to provide the same quality of education that was a national disgrace, according to the cons, when it was done in a public school. Never mind that many of these discount church schools don't require teachers but, rather, script readers, and they offer none of the social and psychological and media and counseling and transportation services that are essential in most communities, especially in schools with large numbers of the kinds of children with lots of melanin that Tierney would like to stuff into religious indoctrination camps.

I have just one question for Tierney: Would he send his own child to one of these 3 thousand dollar a year church schools? I think I know the answer, and I suspect it would be the same one if I were to ask him if he would send his child to one of the poverty-riddled public schools? I think his child and all other children deserve better.

1 comment:

  1. A few years back, Tierney wrote a column contending NYC kids who spoke Spanish could not get instruction in English unless they went to Catholic school.

    I wrote him telling him that was incorrect, that bilingual ed. was optional in NYC, and that kids could be opted out at parental request. I told him I had done precisely that for my Colombian-born niece when she was in first grade, having her placed out of bilingual and into an all-English ESL class.

    He told me that most kids were not related to ESL teachers, but declined to publish that info. It did not much promote his pro-voucher POV. I later found that Sam Freeman of the NY Times and Chancellor Klein were alos unaware of this.

    Freeman also declined to correct this misperception for his readers, and for the woesfully misinformed leader of the NYC school system.

    Every ESL and bilingual teacher knows it though.