Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Dear Shrub Bush

You, in your infinite wisdom have unleashed No Child Left Behind upon the nation.
Girding your loins, you have ridden into battle with the cry of "Hold the Teachers Responsible", "Test Scores For All", "All Children Will Learn", and "Education Must be Accountable".

In Texas, your old stomping ground this week is TAKS Week. Also known Hell week, as "the week on which all depends" and "the week on which the world revolves". A new Pope takes second shift when it's TAKS week.

5th graders must pass Math and Reading or they can't be promoted. We tutored, we've conferenced, we've benchmark tested, we've used pullout programs, we've had after school tutorials, we've tutored in lieu of Heath Fitness (which means we have morbidly obese kids who can maybe add), assigned extra homework, used peer tutoring (smart kids never get to learn anything new because they are spending all their time tutoring the slow kids), we've done everything short of sawing a hole in the kids head and pouring the knowledge in. Major, major dollars have been spent on computer tutoring programs and the technology to run them.

Someone is getting very, very rich from NCLB and it's not the schools. And just how many donations to your campaign fund came from companies that sell testing materials? Now, that would make an interesting TAKS math problem!

Sincerely Yours,
A Concerned Educator


Pigs said...

Amen! Send it! Send it!

Gladys Cortez said...

Oh, SO true. I used to be a teacher also and even BEFORE NCLB, the standardized testing was just insane. I never understood the habit of spending months just doing workbook pages on testing, since the test is supposed to measure what they KNOW, not how much we can info-cram them in a month. This is going to be a lost generation for sure.