When Jay signed on as KIPP's man in the print media, a previous lack of credibility earned from disfiguring the facts turned to public dismissal as dissembling degenerated to all-out bullshit, as defined by Frankfurt in his book, On Bullshit:
He [the bullshitter] does not reject the authority of the truth, as the liar does, and oppose himself to it. He pays no attention to it at all. By virtue of this, bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are.How does the role of bullshitter fit Jay? Try this paragraph from his attack yesterday on the Miron report:
The Miron report leaves the impression that the researchers are not here to help raise student achievement, but to act like racetrack monitors and make sure every competing model is obeying rules designed to make sure nobody gets an unfair advantage. They are not looking for ways to help horses run faster and more safely. Instead, they want to make sure everyone has the proper weights and other equalizers to make it a fair race, when the idea should be not to decide who gets the blue ribbon, but how to improve all schools.
I wish the Miron report would more directly confront the fact that some of the recommendations it makes for KIPP, particularly its call to recruit more disabled and English-language-deficient students, violate charter school laws. KIPP cannot promise that students it recruits will be admitted if there are more applications than there are places at the school. In such circumstances, selection has to be by random lottery.
If KIPP wishes to maintain its status as an exemplar of private management of public schools, rather than a new effort to privatize public schools, it will need to convince policymakers and the public that it intends to recruit and serve a wider range of students and that it will be able to do so with sustainable levels of funding comparable to what other traditional public schools receive.
Before KIPP can be considered a model to be widely replicated, it has to be committed to serving all the students it admits and to serving a portion of the students who are mobile, including those who require a place in the middle of the school year, after the cut-off time for public funding to follow the student. Furthermore, to be considered a viable contributor to a system of public schools, KIPP also needs to recruit and serve a reasonable share of students who are more costly to educate, especially students with disabilities and students who are not native English speakers. The limited range of students that KIPP serves, its inability to serve all students who enter, and its dependence on local traditional public schools to receive and serve the droves of students who leave, all speak loudly to the limitations of this model. Furthermore the funding KIPP receives from public and private sources—more than $6,500 more per pupil in addition to what local school districts receive—is not likely to be sustainable in the longer run . . . .