Three weeks ago, I wrote a post about similarities between the Reconstruction Era, and Civil Rights Era, and current events in education. I would still like your feedback, but allow me to quote a comment I received. The identity of the person will remain anonymous, unless he/she chooses to disclose.
“My two cents…NCLB II: Race to the Top of the cow chips pile is a continuation of the money grab that funneled public dollars and resources to private hands, i.e., textbook publishers, charter schools, standardized test makers. It’s a civil rights issue because education is one of the most powerful vehicles for social change and teachers are the gatekeepers of white, middle to upper-class language that are one of the keys to the kingdom.”
This is a very profound statement, and one the bears a response. Race to the Top is funneling millions of dollars into school districts that are charged with the responsibility of improving student learning. This alleged learning is going to be allegedly awesome, with the unprecedented annual growth of students. What astounds me most about NCLB and RttT, is that lawmakers, policy makers and so-called experts factored nearly every quantifiable reason as to how and why students should succeed as a result of these “new” initiatives. It’s too bad they haven’t focused on the effects of poverty, racism and capitalism, and how these elements cripple sustained progress for a productive, morally conscience, and educated citizenry. It’s also too bad since some of the research that has looked into what we can do to help improve the quality of the economically oppressed hasn’t been sincerely enacted.
- When the money dries up as it always does,
- When the the new initiatives get old real fast as they always do,
- When the newly minted teachers with no experience teaching poor and children of color get frustrated, as they often do,
What is going to be the end result of this rather expensive experiment in political governance in the lives of unsuspecting children?
That’s not the real question, but it was really gnawing at me. Here’s my question, or more like a scenario. I really, really would like your feedback.
If money were no object, what would your ideal school (or school district) look like?