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

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

First Kill Reading First

The key tool used for the "cognitive decapitation" of the poor, as Kozol refers to today's direct instruction behavioral mod chain gangs, has been enabled by the bribery and corruption induced from the billion dollars a year in federal Reading First grants. Set up from the outset to hammer children into early submission like trained parrots and to measure their success by how many nonsense words they can mouth in 60 seconds (DIBELS), the results couldn't be more clear. Even Grover Whitehurst at ED's own research shop knows an unalterable failure when he sees one.

Now Congress is poised to cut off the funding stream that has made millionaires of Carnine, Lyon, Good, Kaminski, and the rest of the Reading First gang. Our elected representatives should not hesitate any longer to stop this educational genocide. There are truly balanced literacy approaches that work, the same ones that these thugs excluded from their get-rich and make-stupid gravy train that has just run out of track.

A blurb from the Kansas City Star:
Students enrolled in Reading First, a key component of President Bush’s so-called No Child Left Behind law, read no better than students who aren’t in the program, according to a new Department of Education study.

“There was no statistically significant impact on reading comprehension scores in grades one, two, or three,” Grover J. Russ Whitehurst, director of the Institute of Education Sciences at the Department of Education, said.

This comes as no surprise to educators:

“As an experienced teacher of third grade, I am deeply saddened by the Reading First Program. I have been teaching for more than 25 years and I have never seen so many students hurt by something that is supposed to be helpful,” writes one educator. “… The focus is on fluency and not comprehension.”

No comments:

Post a Comment