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Why Does Modern Education Reform Dismiss a Crucial Lynchpin?

by Alec on December 5, 2012 · 10 comments

       According to the latest global education report from Pearson’s, the United States ranks 17th in educated its youth. We could go on about the validity of the comparisons and Pearson’s role as the largest education profiteer in the world, but that is a post for a different day. What I would like to point out are the unsurprising findings of what makes a great education system.

    The education systems from Finland to Korea to Singapore   have few commonalities, except one. They all have an overwhelming respect for education, and more directly, the teaching profession. Modern American Education Reform is the antithesis of what is one of the few common traits among the top performers. The following video, and the brave teacher speaking, illustrate exactly this point.

    The group the woman is speaking about, ALEC (no relation), walks hand in hand with free market reformers like Pearsons, Students First, Michelle Rhee, and even Arne Duncan. The tragic thing is, groups like Pearsons even know how important teachers are in the education process, yet give them no respect. Instead of supporting the profession, they look to trivialize, demonize, and patronize teachers.

Take a look. This is how modern American Education Reform works. Tell us how it makes any sense. Please.

Link to video of teacher speaking to ALEC education deformers

give2attain December 5, 2012 at 10:44 pm

Teachers used to be respected in America.

What do you think changed this?

Remember one of my favorite sayings..  If a company has union problems, they probably deserve them…  (ie poor behavior let union get in)

ericf December 6, 2012 at 2:10 am

Sorry, but have to question your whole premise. They never were respected. Teaching was a job for spinsters and young women until they got married, and came with commensurate pay. That’s why they formed unions. The respect came later. It’s been lost because of decades of conservative propaganda attempting to undermine support for public schools and for the right to organize. Any union members who take seriously attacks on teachers unions are committing suicide, because their union is next.

Alec December 6, 2012 at 2:15 am

It is always awesome to know, that when I post about the neurotic hatred of teachers, or the irrational hatred of unions, I will almost immediately get a great local illustration of the reactionary and factless stance on working people.  And make no  mistake, it is both irrational and hatred.

give2attain December 6, 2012 at 3:12 am

So I assume you believe it is a Conservative conspiracy like Eric.

It has nothing to do with Unions demanding that Teachers be rewarded based on seniority and degrees instead of performance.

It is hard to look in the mirror.  My favorite books on the topic are “Leadership and Self Deception” and “The Anatomy of Peace”. Both by the Arbinger institute.  

Bill Prendergast December 6, 2012 at 3:07 am

There isn’t any “change,” the public hasn’t lost its respect for teachers. Despite all non-stop attacks in media on public education and teacher’s unions–Americans still have great respect for teachers (see below). That’s probably because so many Americans know people who teach their kids–and have some sense of how hard teachers work in the classroom and after hours.

From AngusReid Public Opinion, October 2012:

Most Respected Professions in the U.S.:
Farmers, Nurses, Doctors, Veterinarians,

Note that two of the top five most respected professions (nurses and teachers) are represented by unions. And the top profession on the list (farmer) depends on federal government subsidy and price support for survival.

What are the least respected American professions?

Least Respected in the U.S.: Business
Executives, Lawyers, Car Salesmen,

No union employees on that list.

give2attain December 6, 2012 at 5:49 am

I guess Alec’s post is wrong then…

I personally think very highly of most Teachers I know.

It’s their comp and job security policies that I dislike.

I always wonder if the Union folks pay the people they hire twice as much just because they have been in the business longer or they have a degree.  Or if they hire the low price provider with good references?

My guess is they hire the low priced provider who perfoms well.  Just like most of us.  

Bill Prendergast December 6, 2012 at 9:53 am

Alec’s post says it’s “groups like Pearson” (the world’s largest for-profit education business) that disrespect teachers.

The poll finding I showed you (above) indicates that Americans have a hell of a lot of respect for teachers. That poll finding says nothing about Alec’s remark or “the level of respect for-profit education businesses (like Pearson) have for teachers.”

All that poll finding (and other poll findings) proves is that you were  wrong–when you wrote in to say that “teachers used to be respected in America, but that has changed.” (Read your own comment, above. You got your facts wrong.)

Honestly: sometimes I don’t know what to make of you, G2A. Sometimes you seem aware of what’s going on, and other times you seem to be unable to follow your own train of thought.  

give2attain December 6, 2012 at 11:28 am

“They all have an overwhelming respect for education, and more directly, the teaching profession. Modern American Education Reform is the antithesis of what is one of the few common traits among the top performers.”

I apologize if I misinterpretted the point of the post. This statement leads me to believe their is a pretty big group that Alec believes is against the Teachers…  I mean even Obama is part of the Modern American Education Reform group…  Remember: Race To The Top.  

And the folks in Wisc re-elected our controversial Gov next door.

But if some Reformers are good and some are bad, that makes a difference.  How does one tell the difference?

give2attain December 6, 2012 at 5:57 pm

I your personal life do you hire the expensive guy with the tenure / degrees and pay twice as much, when there is a guy who is much more cost effective with equal or better performance?

Assuming you like to get the most bang for your buck, (like most of us) why do you support comp systems based on seniority and degrees in the Public sector that we are all paying for?

Maybe because it is someone elses money? (ie tax the rich)

Bill Prendergast December 6, 2012 at 2:07 am

Courage to show up, to speak truth to power, courage to come back to the mike when the official began to answer with a deceptive denial. Only one way it could have been better: name ALEC, on the mike, if ALEC’s writing the policies complained of. If ALEC’s writing the laws and policies and these officials are just puppets–show people the puppeteer.

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