Eduwonk blasts an ad in the Boston Globe that claims No Child Left Behind “will close the majority of American elementary schools, or will allow them to be taken over by the state or profit-making businesses.” And end civilization as we know it. According to the ad, NCLB:
*Shifts control of most aspects of education from states to Washington ideologues
*Drives students and teachers out of schools and encourages lying about the facts
*Limits and proscribes educational research
*Bases all decision-making on test scores
*Labels effective schools as failing and effective teachers as unqualified
*Controls who may teach and how they teach
*Mandates archaic methods and materials
*Uses blacklists to banish professionals, institutions, methods, and books
*Punishes diversity in schools
Eduwonk responds, “Well, they got one right. It apparently does encourage lying about the facts.”
Education Week’s story reports that the anti-NCLB ad was placed by a group led by Ken Goodman, an emeritus University of Arizona education professor who’s a whole language advocate.
The story quotes Andrew J. Rotherham, director of education policy at the Progressive Policy Institute, which runs Eduwonk.
“Hysterical paranoia went out of style after the primaries, when John Kerry [prevailed],” Mr. Rotherham said. “Ads like this hurt the cause of people seeking changes in No Child Left Behind, rather than help it,” he added. “Your average person sees an ad like that and is going to smell weirdness, not reasoned debate.”
Come now. Hysterical paranoia never goes out of style.