Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Birds of a Feather "Reform" Together

 Last night as the sweat rolled off my nose I watched The Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman. If you haven't seen the original pro charter Propagandamercial don't bother. What I heard loudly from the Inconvenient Truth however caught my attention. The "reformers" run around spouting their "No Excuses" mantra. Hilarious that they would choose for their battlecry the same phrase used by a jeans company who actually courted disgraced figure skater, honeymoon porn tape starlette and Jim Rome's favorite 9-11 caller, Tonya Trailer Park Harding to be their celebrity spokes-ho. Among the "Excuses" the deformers like to pretend pretend things like poverty and family dysfunction don't matter and societal influences play no part in what happens in school. Have any of these dilettantes ever found themselves in between two 17 year old boys on a Monday morning or more likely on the floor with them as they punch their way into a formal suspension over something that went on in the neighborhood over the weekend?  No of course not, they don't trouble themselves with the actual boots on the ground end of teaching in a building surrounded on all sides by poverty, drug gangs absentee landlords, absentee parents and zero cooperating witnesses to anything that happens in the street. No the eduwankers live far behind the lines in their safe little bunkers where  they can lob their policy missiles at kids and teachers who live in a world filled with such urgency that the inane policies of these dopes may just as well be junk mail shoved under the door.

Educational "Reformers" discuss policy decisions on a  sylvan weekend retreat

If you've ever watched The War by Ken Burns you will note a frightening similarity between the pose of the "reformers" and General Lloyd Fredendall, the chickenshit who was replaced in Africa by General George S. Patton. Among his misdeeds, Fredendall once stayed aboard ship until all the fighting was done : After the Torch landings (Fredendall stayed on his command ship, HMS Largs until after fighting was over), Fredendall became the de-facto military governor in Oran. Orders from his headquarters in the Grand Hotel of Oran were headed with “II Corps – In the Field” which prompted laughter from his troops living in tents and slit trenches. 
And in a show of solidarity with educational "reformers" everywhere : During the advance into Tunisia, Fredendall used an entire engineer company of the 19th Engineer Regiment to build him a large, dug-in Corps headquarters bunker 70 miles (110 km) behind the front in a place called Speedy Valley (nine miles southeast of Tébessa). Blasted and drilled out of solid rock, the bunker (actually two U-shaped complexes running 160 feet (49 m) into the hillside) took three weeks to construct.[4] An entire anti-aircraft battalion was emplaced to protect the headquarters. Fredendall also ordered a bulletproof Cadillac similar to Eisenhower’s, and regularly phoned Oran to find out why it wasn’t being delivered faster. General Omar N. Bradley called the headquarters "an embarrassment to every American soldier," and General Eisenhower, after viewing the elaborate structure, reminded his senior commanders that even generals must assume personal risk in combat.
Just like the swaggering big mouth who hid in the bunker while the shells flew we see the same unchecked arrogance in theory and incompetence in execution from people like big mouth Geoffery Canada who takes home about half a million from his Harlem Charter's C.E.O.  gig and tells teachers it's their problem and their fault if the kid doesn't learn yet he kicked out an entire grade level from his school when they didn't score high enough on standardized tests. Sad to say "deformers" the above mentioned contingencies are not "Excuses" they are Realities and they damned well DO have an effect on how a kid learns. In fact, the 2 most important factors research shows to influence learning are Class Size and Teacher Experience.  Isn't that interesting as the Philadelphia Public Schools are poised to be taken over by charters and a wave of brainwashed do gooders and know nothings still wet behind the ears are going to rush in where angels fear to tread. The real news will be coming out of Philly probably around early October when it becomes apparent their experiment is going the way of the Hindenberg.  Sadly, as always "The Children" these shills pretend to care so deeply about are going to be the victims - again. 

1 comment: