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

Monday, February 26, 2007

NCLB, er, Iraq

I hope Josh Marshall will not be offended if I use his comments about Iraq this morning to make the same points about NCLB--my brackets, not his:

"The reason our [NCLB] mission in Iraq has proven to be so disastrous and corrupt is very simple -- the advocates and architects of that [education policy] war are completely corrupt, inept, and deceitful." The words are Glenn Greenwald's. And though many others have said the same thing in slightly different words, it bears repeating again and again. The corruption and ineptitude aren't unfortunate add-ons to the effort. They're at the heart of it. It's a stain like original sin. And the same goes for the democratizing element of the [NCLB] mission. Even among critics of [NCLB] the war, it's often accepted as granted that a key aim of this effort was [closing the achievement gap] democratization -- only that it was botched, like so much else, or that the aim of [closing the achievement gap] democracy, in a crunch, plays second fiddle to other priorities. Not true. The key architects of the policy don't believe in [closing the achievement gap] democracy or the rule of law. The whole [testing scheme] invasion was based on contrary principles. And the aim can't be achieved because those anti-democratic principles are written into the DNA of [NCLB policy] occupation, even as secondary figures have and continue to labor to [close the achievement gap] build democracy in the country.

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