posted on Mar, 14 2012 @ 01:46 AM
I disagree with the OP.
First, today’s children aren’t “stupid” by comparison of yesterday’s youth. Cross-longitudinal studies have shown little variation between
different generations’ average scores on intelligence assessments.
Second, public schools now include students with special needs. Prior to 1975, students with intellectual and developmental disabilities were
precluded from public schools (and that undoubtedly has shaped older people’s perceptions of childhood norms.) Today, public schools by law must
provide a “free and appropriate public education” for all students. This means schools must include severely disabled students, students from
extremely impoverished regions, students who don’t speak the native language, etc. With the passage of No Child Left Behind, these low-functioning
students’ scores on standardized tests are included in national statistics, and this just presents an image of crisis, when in fact, we’re seeing
for the first time what happens when all children are included in public education.
In other words, don’t buy the hype.
Now, to address the OP’s individual points: 1) teaching the test is a real problem but it is overstated, in my opinion, as “low” averages on
standardized tests suggest teachers aren’t aligning their curricula with national standards, 2) the curriculum for Tennessee looks fine (in fact,
I’m surprised and pleased they included IB electives) and I’m not sure what you find objectionable, and 3) bad parenting is nothing new.
I think the system is okay, but left-wing and right-wing activists have created this false sense of crisis so they can swoop in and take control of
education under the banner of “Save the Children!”
(Oh, and yay! My first post!)