Just had conversation with daughter about UFOs, constitutional ammendments, politcs, and education... yeah, strange mix, but it was just an organic
kind of conversation.
In any case, we were once again surprised by the sheer amount of stuff that she simply doesn't know. Her response to our shock.. "If it's not on the
TAKS test, we don't need to know it."
For those of you not in the know, the TAKS test is the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills. It is the bar by which all schools, teachers, and
principals are measured. If a school has too many students fail the TAKS, teachers and administrators get fired, among other things. This level of
enforcement is a direct result of the "No Child Left Behind" legislation.
I took several standardized assessment tests through high school.. in fact, I HAD to pass the precursor to TAKS called TAAS in order to graduate. The
differance was that if I failed, no teachers or principals were held accountable. Ultimately, it was up to me to be able to pass that test.
So what happens when you start holding teachers and principals directly responsible for whether or not their students will pass a standardized test?
They do everything in their power to ENSURE those students will pass. At this point, every single assignment and every single lesson is taught with
an eye on the big test. If it is not on the test, it is simply not taught.
And by way of legislation we have destroyed the American education system. Now that we have had a few generations of students leave high school with
sub-standard education and teachers are quitting or retiring, there's not much chance of a rebound in the near future.
I would suggest that anyone who can
should make an attempt to homeschool. It is too late for our daughter, for various reasons, but other
still have a chance. Don't leave your child behind.
R.I.P. American Public Education
edit on 4-30-2011 by rogerstigers because: (no reason given)