Tag: education

Republicans do not live up to their ideals of small government (and also, we need to spend right now)

Regardless of whether or not you agree that slashing spending, fiscal austerity, balanced budgets, and a low federal deficit are good ideas, the fact remains that the Republican Party does not generally live up to its aims of expense reduction and small government. As hard as it is to believe, there are still some people who think that Reagan cut the size of government, although Reagan was a big spender and laid the groundwork for the immense national debt we live with today. (even the Austrian School agrees) Note: Full historical budget tables, FY 2015 Then there was Ol' Dubya with his two disgraceful wars, TARP bailout, auto bailouts, fiscal stimulus, and tax cuts. Not to mention yanking the election out from under Al Gore's ...

R.E.S.P.E.C.T.: Find out what it means to me

In response to this well-intentioned article defending the absurdity of tricking third-graders into thinking they are bad at math, thanks to the Orwellian imposition of the Gates-led Common Core standards -- and specifically, the exhortation to "Respect the Teachers" instead of questioning them: "No. Question *everything*. We should be teaching our children to do the same, versus bowing obsequiously to the whims of authority. We should also be teaching them that having respect for people isn’t mutually exclusive with questioning them." >> Read the rest of this well-intentioned rant against the (hopefully!) unintentionally crushing of our children's souls, complete with a raging case of Excessive Parentheticals -- if you dare!

Tests are not learning tools

Tests are evaluating tools that can only act as a diagnostic — they offer no improvement in the actual ability of children to learn. In the so-called "real world" we don’t take tests — we solve problems and tackle challenges that (ideally) resonate with us somehow when we manage to solve them. Unfortunately one of the more important parts of that equation — the passion, and the interest that drives us to ask questions in the first place — is often absent in many a modern life. In service of stability, in service of family, of practicality, of a grim sort of tradition — for whatever reasons, we find ourselves here. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Moreover, tests are supposedly a heuristic that stands in for “teacher performance." But ...