And yet there is much gnashing of teeth and beating of chests at the school board, not to mention new "moral imperatives" around literacy. Superintendent Hopson has even gone so far as to notice “there’s a parade of horribles that goes along with kids who can’t read by the time they leave third grade.” What Hopson apparently has not noticed is the parade of horribles (no jobs, hope, respect, housing, safety, etc.) that predict the future of impoverished three-year-olds long before they even enter school in the segregated Bluff City of King Cotton where politicians continue to thump their chests about "moral imperatives" while ignoring the vestiges of slavery.
When you read the reporter's account below, you have to wonder how deep the disconnect can get and how ethically blind and humanly callous the corporate ideology can express itself. Is autonomy within schools really the answer to literacy problems, or is it an easy way of washing your hands clean of the problem when you know the newly "autonomous" charter schools will get rid of the school librarian to put more money into the school CEO's pocket? Are "literacy coaches" with clip boards and fascist efficiency goals preferable to caring, mature librarians who know how to connect children with great books? What can we expect from "pilot" interventions by the University of Memphis, where the Gospel According to Gates rules? And which slime balls from the education industry are selling their oppressive scripted bullshit lessons to the newly-concerned Shelby County School Board? How much stupider to the effects of segregation and poverty can politicians get?