Those billions paid off with the 2001 passage of the No Child Left Behind Act which made the right wing corporate agenda of undermining and ultimately privatizing public education national policy. Though standardized test scores were long known to prove little aside from student family income, they suddenly became the gold standard for judging teacher & school performance. School districts were required to purchase & give dozens of costly meaningless tests and to publish lists ranking their own schools and teachers as “failing” when test scores were low, which again, was mostly wherever students were poor.
Amid torrents of “blame the teachers” propaganda, so-called “failing schools” were required to hire expensive contractors with cockeyed “run the school like a business” remedies and more crackpot tests. Thus it was that NCLB spawned almost overnight an entire industry of jackleg educational consultants and test suppliers guaranteed a market with dollars diverted from already tight public school budgets. Those industries attracted capital investors, and began doing what every other industry does in the US —- make big campaign contributions to politicians to get sweeter contracts and more favorable regulation. When test scores still didn’t rise, NCLB required many schools to close, making openings for chains of charter schools, often highly profitable charter schools, bringing the blessings of “choice” and free market competition to the educational “marketplace.”
So the failed NCLB was the basis for NCLB waivers. The NCLB waivers were granted if the state adopted many of the principles of Race to The Top even if that state wasn’t a RTTT winner. But here is the strange part, NCLB was deem flawed and too punitive for states not meeting the set goals and bars of NCLB. Teachers are being held accountable for schools not meeting those objectives. The justification for school turnarounds and charter schools are based on traditional schools not meeting the objectives of NCLB measured by standardized test and in Delaware’s case it was the flawed DSTP. Could those unintended consequences actually be intended as part of a master plan to justify privatization via charters and the expansion of employing additional education consultants? Wall Street education ponzi scheme!
Didn’t I tell you the Bush family is in on it ! Posted on March 4, 2011 by kilroysdelaware