The rise of teachers' unions in the 1960's was the signal event in the death of what had previously been known as the "teaching profession."
(Graph from Powerline, "Futility." Click pic for full size.)
The teachers' union's mantra was, "it's for the kids." We need to spend more money on education in order to remain competitive. We need to spend more money in order to attract better teachers. Give us what we want and we'll do a better job.
The following has been copied from "Appendix G--Requirements for OAKS Writing Performance Administration," (.pdf).
• Computer/word processor:
o Word processing applications used during testing should be those used
during instruction so they are familiar to the students.
o Automatic grammar checks must be disabled.
o New for 2010-11: students may use an automatic spell check feature
The promise of more money for education is reduced to this simple fact; they can't even teach students how to spell the words they write. So, enable "spell check."
I'm not surprised that our state government is so out of whack it makes ones head spin. When the Governor announces the expenditure of $700-thousand dollars to help build eight electric vehicle charging stations on I-5, isn't there at least one critic out there who can ask the simple question, "what electric cars?"
What company would purchase electric vehicles that would require hours of roadside hours standing idly by while an electric car's batteries are being recharged? What man or woman, whose time is valued as a scarce commodity, would agree to standing around idly, while gas and diesel vehicles race by on their way to their destinations? What idiot would begin a trip of hundreds of miles with a vehicle that measures success in tens of miles?
The promise of education.
The next generation of the best and brightest.
In a section of the Oregon Stater, not included in the on-line version, sorry, are the words of CLA Dean Larry Rodgers, B.A., M.A., Ph.D. English:
"CLA takes its foundational teaching role very seriously. Every student in the university takes our classes. But if you take a more specific area like climate change, you find that while scientists have strong, data-based research validating disturbing planetary trends, the move to public action has been a tough sell. Why? I would say that we haven't yet found a persuasive public narrative that translates solid science into policy and policy into action. How to achieve buy-in is where CLA needs to be a world-changer. We teach our students how to communicate, how to think deeply and ehtically about tough issues, about the responsibilities of citizenship. I strongly believe that our ability to address an issue like climate change lies in how well we use these kinds of skills."
I would suggest Dean Rodgers assemble his kit of logical thinking tools and read the latest from the Royal Society (.pdf). For a full discussion, see Watts Up With That?
More disturbing is perhaps the ways found to "communicate." This is a disturbing video produced by the 10:10 campaign.
Why would you want Dean Rodgers to have access to your kids? He has stated his agenda. And he is trading on a young person's eagerness to please, to succeed. Determining what knowledge is, and whether or not it can be perceived is a lesser concern for Dean Rodgers. It's an agenda that counts.
Best and brightest? I think not. Intellectual thuggery is still thuggery.
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