Cathie Black debacle just the latest in a long line of miscues...

Cathie Black debacle just the latest in a long line of miscues by education reformers


By: Drew Chung | Senior Editor at and Regular Contributor to

The abrupt departure of Cathie Black is just the latest black eye of the city school leadership. Five years ago momentum for the pubic school choice expansion holds educators to be more accountable for results through testing and chip away at the power of the teachers union which seemed unstoppable.

People who wants to spend more money on reducing class sizes primarily and who resists these changes are emboldened nowadays. The reformers on the other hand are correct on the merits overwhelmingly. While rewarding the very best and removing the worst, all the teachers have been treated the same regardless of quality. The progressive ideology is allowed to take over teacher training institutions. The process has been elevated and the content has been downgraded in the classroom. The soft prejudice of low expectations with respect to many poor and minority students put by George W.Bush by assuming that they can’t learn because they come from disadvantages backgrounds.

They began treating value added data which are used to judge the teachers using the year by year testing gains which are made by their students and it is the first among the miscues of the reformers. These data are tremendously valuable in concept. The biggest innovation in education in a generation is by helping to pinpoint who is learning and who is not in real time.

It is still vexing to parents and teachers that the mixing out of data by formulas a theoretical physicist might create. The formula which is more sophisticated and theoretically intelligent educates design and then it is more confusing too and it is unreliable in most of the cases. Ten percent of people said then it may be good to identify the very best and the very worst. Some research shows that it is of limited usage to make distinctions in the middle. To use the value added data with a little humidity to start the reformers would have been wise enough. Let the teachers learn how it worked, let them use it to improve their craft and let them get comfortable with its application.

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