The Only Solution To Our Education Crisis: Fire the Children

  strictly business

They had their chance.Not too long ago, certain young people, like former D.C. child baron Michelle Rhee, were picked up from their Ivy League graduations in Teach for America warplanes and parachuted onto schools in low-income areas, which, according to them, suddenly made them experts on the “education crisis.” What is the education crisis? The education crisis is that America’s children, on the whole, do not score as well on certain standardized tests as children in many other countries. How embarrassing! Thankfully, these young people were available to take our school administrator jobs and make documentaries about themselves so we could all learn the real facts about education: Teachers will stop at nothing to harm each and every one of our children unless we watch them very carefully, and teachers’ unions work hard to make sure anybody who could ever help a child never makes it into the profession. Unfortunately, in the real world, the reasons some children are better at learning than others are complex and varied. So there is only one true solution to the perceived education crisis. We shouldn’t fire the teachers; we should fire the children.

Never mind that the U.S. actually is among the top ten countries in college graduates and yet cannot these days give its young people jobs that utilize those degrees, if it can give them jobs at all; apparently raising scores on these tests of arbitrary knowledge will solve all of our nation’s social ills. You may think it’s impossible to turn a child with a low IQ, poor nutrition, and absent and uncaring parents in an anti-intellectual environment into a genius with a love for learning, but that’s probably because you’re some kind of racist.

It turns out demonizing teachers and making their job undesirable to competent people who would like to become them does not always magically make these test scores rise. Reformers like to talk about education like it’s a business, and teachers, after all, are just managers—what private-sector office doesn’t have a few bad ones? The people actually making the test scores, the child laborers we call “schoolchildren,” are the root of the problem here. They’re just not getting the job done.

If our country has so much money, why doesn’t it just fire the kids who are repeatedly bad at taking these tests? We can afford to hire away these children from overseas who are so good at it. Problem solved! Or, if we want to really improve our test scores, we should hire people who have better qualifications. Sure, sixth-graders in the Netherlands are good at multiplication, but what if our sixth-graders all had bachelor’s degrees? They’d be even better.

It’s time we stop putting up with these idiot children and their poor results and bring in some real performers we can show off to the world. Education is a serious business these days, and we should start acting like it.

Why has nobody thought of this until now? Wait, do the kids have a union too? THOSE THUGS!

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Jack Stuef is your loyal editor and a freelance satirist or something like that. He is a contributing writer for The Onion. E-mail him or whatever.

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174 comments

  1. MittsHairHelmet

    What if we used the best corporate solution, outsourcing?

    We could set up test-taking centers in India and young people there could take standardized tests, using assumed American names, for a fraction of the price it would cost to have actual American schoolchildren take the tests.

        1. AngryBlakGuy

          …considering that I had a tendency to combine my "slackerdom" and flirting it is definitely a possibility! You arent that semi-nerdy yet extremely hot blonde from my finance class are you?

    1. Serolf_Divad

      True story: in a former life I was a college language teacher. One day I went over some material in class just before handing out a test. When i handed out the test I looked at my watch, and to my chagrin, realized I'd given them only about 15 minutes to complete an hour long test!

      So I tried an experiment. I explained: "Ok guys, I see I haven't given you enough time to take this test. So lets try something new. next class you're going to complete this test. And it's right there in front of you. So go ahead. Look it over. You've got all teh questions before hand. Just don't write anything down."

      So the next class they took the test and…

      …drum roll…

      …didn't perform any better than usual.

      1. Lascauxcaveman

        Did any of them speak the language you were teaching? Or were they just sitting there, nodding and smiling politely?

      2. Clancy_Pants

        I've seen the same thing. I've taught a graduate level course for a while. Two years ago the coordinator of the class wanted all the instructors to make their sections of one exam "open resource". Notes, books, online. Any real world tools they wanted to use solving some case scenarios. I didn't change my questions. The very best students did better. No real difference in the bottom third of the class. Same failure rate. Some just don't give a crap.

        1. Fuck Toad

          Or at least some of those bottom third of students completely lack the research skills necessary to make use of the resources available to them.

          I'm really curious if anyone's done the legwork to do an analysis of how strongly research skills correlate to general academic performance. Anecdotally, it seems to be an extremely strong correlation.

    2. DashboardBuddha

      That seems to work for the evangelical private schools in this country. I used to teach at-risk teens and a fair number of them came from the local Billy Ray Jim Bob School of the Spirit and Reel Pit BBQ. Most of them couldn't to basic math or read at grade level, yet they seemed to have very nice transcripts.

      1. Jukesgrrl

        In the last two cities I've lived in, kids from Talibangelical charter schools had the highest test scores by a wide margin.

        1. DashboardBuddha

          Oh, I'm not saying some of them don't do a good job…just the ones I had experience with passed along kids with marginal skills…but great grades.

    3. ttommyunger

      Might work better than City of Atlanta Public Schools; they changed answers on the standard tests. 'Course, they're so stupid they got caught, several investigation, even the Georgia Bureau of Investigation had to be called in because the internal APS investigations were corrupt. They now have the very real threat of de-cerification hanging over them. Parents, students,homeowners and businesspeople are not amused.

  2. Ducksworthy

    Lets see, its either that the teachers are conspiring to keep kids from learning or it could be that the free market capitalist system treats children as the unmarketable and hence worthless thrash they are. This might impede learning. http://nyr.kr/eToPCz

    1. Giveusabob

      Now now, let's not go around proposing outlandish poppycock like maybe the Invisible Hand doesn't actually instill a high school education into our children, with magic.

    1. Negropolis

      You know, I'm all for improvements in education, but when I hear somebody talking about how South Korea is so much "smarter," and how they send their kids too school every day of the year, I always remind them that there are social costs to that. It is no mistake that South Korea has a rdiculously high suicide rate.

  3. samsuncle

    "We shouldn’t fire the teachers; we should fire the children".
    As a husband and father of teachers I could not agree more because it would sure make my life easier.

    1. Lascauxcaveman

      My wife's a (first grade) teacher and she says none of her kids deserve to be fired. It's some of their parents that need the pink slip.

        1. Jukesgrrl

          Except for the ones who care too much and are still calling their kids in college to make sure they wiped their noses and are in the Dean's Office every five minutes demanding good grades because they paid Lindsay's and Jared's tuition, DIDN'T THEY?!

  4. undeterredbyreality

    "yet cannot these days give its young people jobs that utilize those degrees, if it can give them hobs at all"

    Ya left out an "o" on "hobos."

  5. PublicLuxury

    Kids that take the test are all from Mississippi and they are last at everything so last is their normal.

  6. OneDollarJuana

    It really has turned into a case of "the beatings will continue until morale improves". I have several educators and ex-educators in my family and have heard no end of stories which all point to a recurring theme. It's never "how can we help you do your job better?" it's "why the fuck can't you do your job better with less?".

    1. MildMidwesterner

      Judging how Glenn Beck uses his chalkboards, taking chalkboards away from the educational system is probably a good thing.

    2. HELisforHEL

      So true. And the folks I know who teach end up buying supplies, working late into the night and otherwise sacrificing their quality of life in order to do the best they can with no support system-from parents, administrators and their own government. But they're the villains.
      I think it harkens to the real fact-Repugs demonize teachers and intelligence and "the Elitists" in order to insure that the dumbass masses continue to grow and guarantee the continuation of their party.

      1. Beowoof

        Trying to turn the whole country into Mississippi. I believe an investment in manufactured housing will be big going forward with this crowd, as Mississippi is the leader in manufactured housing or trailer parks.

        1. elviouslyqueer

          Mississippi is the leader in manufactured housing or trailer parks.

          Now now. We prefer to call them "modular living communities."

          1. Jukesgrrl

            No, the Dwell ones are modern. The ones in Mississippi look like small, vinyl replicas of plantation mansions. Tara by Leggo.

    3. DashboardBuddha

      Former teacher here…I now sell insurance if that tells you anything. I miss teaching, but not the bullshit that goes along with it. If I EVER have to answer to another principal/administrator/superintendent again I.will.puke.blood.

    4. Dudleydidwrong

      Another former teacher here. We used to think that our superintendent was named Les Ismore because we heard his name so often. The other motto was "Do more with Les." He never showed up to work with us, however.

  7. DownFist Troll

    This is clearly a vindication for Jesus Camp Homeschooling! Clearly learning about science and math Satan's laws were holding America back.

  8. Texan_Bulldog

    Michelle Rhee has made the mistake of believing all the media hype about her….just like some other crazy RW women.

  9. Weenus299

    Outsourcing younguns. Brilliant! In addition, I was thinking we could just put all the extra riff-raff that we have here in the confines of this US of A into ready-made prisons, where they would get tattooed and produce all the Jesus-motto license plates that we need for our state-of-the-art mobile incinerators.

  10. Gopherit

    I attended Catholic schools in my youth. I noticed a definite correlation between increased test scores and willingness of certain Nuns to be extra generous with their yard sticks.

    1. HELisforHEL

      I can't say it any better than this :
      TINA FEY: You know what, bitches get stuff done. That's why Catholic schools use nuns as teachers and not priests. Those nuns are mean old clams and they sleep on cots and they're allowed to hit you. And at the end of the school year you hated those bitches but you knew the capital of Vermont.

        1. Beowoof

          Jesuslove Boot Camp would be a hit. And you could hit the students, wow, a win-win. They have to study and when they don't a good ass whipping will straighten them out.

    1. Jukesgrrl

      And don't forget to burn all the artwork that shows them playing. They need to see some pro-business artwork.

  11. littlebigdaddy

    I have a job, but would also like to have a hob, although I am not sure what this entails.

    1. user-of-owls

      Now you're talking about a "hobjob" and they already banned them in public around France.

    1. AngryBlakGuy

      …I'm gonna have to disagree with that! The only thing we make better that babies in this country is high quality METH!

  12. Zvi_Bleindmeis

    This issue needs to be traced upstream one more step. Parental incompetence is the source of America's testing gap. What we need is some Jesus-Sharia structure in this country. Only high school graduates should have children. Offending baby-havers should be placed in for-profit prisons to pick up our litter and empty our public trash cans, allowing government to be smaller. And babies that result from pre-diploma sex or outside the bounds of Holy Matrimony should be put up for adoption. Or maybe raised as livestock.

    1. Ducksworthy

      Michele Bachmann is way ahead of you. "They have raised five children (Lucas, Harrison, Elisa, Caroline, and Sophia), and provided foster care for 23 other children."

    2. OneDollarJuana

      As my wife the ex-school-psychologist would always say after meeting the parents of some poor, messed-up kid, "well, there's a big no-wonder!"

    3. Beowoof

      When I was kid if you screwed up at school you prayed they didn't call home, because the trouble for me there would be 10 times worse. Now when they call about little Johnny being a fuck up at school, the parents either head on down to the school to beat up the teacher or they hire a lawyer to sue them for being mean to Johnny. Ah America.

      1. jus_wonderin

        I agree there.

        Personal story: I sent one to the office for always coming in to class late. He was a bit stunned. But, two years later I had him again and he said "That time you sent me to the office, actually changed my life."

        I get a bit misty recalling that.

  13. OneYieldRegular

    If the 2012 GOP platform doesn't contain a policy statement calling for 16-hour workdays, six days a week, in grimy, hazardous factories, for all children between the ages of 6 and 14, then it will be an absolute betrayal of GOP values. I may well be forced to take my vote elsewhere.

    1. Giveusabob

      I believe I've read about such a paradise lost in a certain sausage connoisseur's journal written by Upton Sinclair. Indeed yes, I do look forward to its return.

  14. metamarcisf

    I went to Catholic School too and the nuns, convinced that southpaws are the devil, smacked me until I wrote righthanded, from which I've never recovered. But, guess what, I have a hob!

    1. Jim89048

      I got the same treatment in public school, but never converted. Which might explain that whole hob thing, or lack thereof.

      1. Jim89048

        Since the kids are already armed, this would just level the playing field a little. Teachers would still be outnumbered, though.

  15. owhatever

    It is the fault of the schools. We must stop financing them with our taxes, and burn them all down so the little bastard so-called "students" and their trampy, skanky teachers have nowhere to perform their evil rituals.

  16. greypanter

    You need to get a license from the government to drive a motorcycle, requiring some knowledge of driving a motorcycle, but to have 20 kids, you are required to know nada. When I was in (all white, working class neighborhood) grade school, the dumb kids were the badly behaved kids and vice versa. There is solution to the "education crisis" in the above, but I will leave it to you for homework.

    1. HELisforHEL

      I agree with you there Greypanter. A license to cut hair, own a dog…but ours is not a popular idea.
      If parenting qualifications actually had to consist of more than simply owning some fertile bits n' pieces and an overwrought gland or two, perhaps this country wouldn't be in this civility/intelligence/responsibility death spiral.

    2. SorosBot

      There's only one solution: we need to send a certain teen mom to convince the kids that abstinence is the only way, as having a baby is totally hard work and all you'll get is a stint on a dancing reality show that you make it on until the end on despite your complete inability to dance and a hob getting paid to give speeches on abstinence despite your complete inability to speak coherently.

  17. littlebigdaddy

    Yeah, the edu-nerds are always going on about Singapore this and China that, but, fuck, I lived in China and those kids were so fucking stressed all the time and they had no time for what we would consider normal childhood activities. That is why they are terrible in soccer. They are good in the sort of individual sports where a special talent can be identified and developed in one person, but are really bad at sports that depend on some sort of social context. And, having taught at an elite university, I can say that the students consider their admission to such a place to be achievement enough. As college students they are much less original and engaged than US students, despite the latters' obvious lack of preparation. OK–rant over. Plus, you know, as Pat Buchanan pointed out, we have teh blax and Messicans, which brings the average down.

    1. ManchuCandidate

      Based on what I've seen the past 30 or so years. I think we can replace blax and Messicans with the angry white Southerners who don't know why book lurning is so damned gud when you just needs some kommon cents.

      As for your issues with Asian kids… no disagreements. I was one once.

  18. DashboardBuddha

    They're firing Miss Grundy? What will this mean for Mr. Weatherbee? They were so close!

  19. ManchuCandidate

    The US America edumakashun is at war with a group of self entitled rich (mostly white) fuckers who think that only they should go into Ivy League skules and self entitled ill educated ignorant (and proud of it) fat dipshits who think their kids should get into Ivy League skules if only they won the lottery or got that futbawl skolarship them black kids gets.

    1. Beowoof

      Always true, just look at Mississippi and what they do for the kid after they make the mother have it.

      1. poncho_pilot

        yeah, just a rephrasing of: "we will force you to have that child. after that? tough shit. you and your child on your own."

  20. Billmatic

    I also have to say that I think it's funny that now teachers are wondering where the backlash agaisnt them came from. Hello guys, all those Gen Ys you bored to death with your stupid rules and crappy worksheets are now adults and voting and we remember that at least 80% of our teachers were useless know nothings that were much more interested in giving you a worksheet to fill out and telling everyone to be quiet so they could sit at their desks and read Stephen King instead of actually teaching someone something. If you were that *really* special Coach, then you'd probably fling the book away and flirt with the girls.

    I always did appreciate being sent out of the room for "talking back" because they were so profoundly misinformed and unqualified to teach that a 14 year old knew more about Egypt than they did.

    1. prommie

      Ohh, man, you need to get over it. Whew, I have never heard a grown up complain about being bored in school in my life. Being bored in school is paradise compared to being bored at work.

      1. Billmatic

        Well that's weird because it's exactly the same thing except you get paid to be bored at work and you don't get sent home for being smarter than the teacher. So, basically you're completely wrong.

        Oh I also forgot to mention, the number of times I had to sit in time out at recess for finishing my standardized test first was beyond ridiculous. I guess you were the slow kid that enjoyed grade school.

        1. Oblios_Cap

          I guess you were the slow kid that missed ll the classes on proper comma usage. Dipshit.

        2. DashboardBuddha

          Don't blame the standardized tests on the teachers. We hated them more than you did.

    2. Conflabberdaddled

      "could sit at their desks and read Stephen King"

      During a study hall at the school where I was observing for a teacher practicum, I asked one particularly silent, undistracted boy what he was reading. He held up "The Lizard King," and I asked how he ended up interested in Jim Morrison or any biography on a musical icon from generations ago? "My dad gave it to me."
      This was a seventh grader in public school in 2008 when iPhone mania hadn't yet escalated into the ubiquitous distraction it would become; the study hall's kids who weren't engaged in banter during down-time, still (from eavesdropping on their dialogue) took to their imaginations and, as I had now witnessed, occasionally a parent took time to recommend selections for silent reading periods. I held on to hope for that generation because of this kid.
      But now it's as if no one remembers how to foster, to perpetuate, the engine of education that's relied on (competent) teachers' instincts, parents' input and children's fluid capacity to learn over all these preceding years. I suppose the denigrative factors are so numerous and complex, the more they are hyper-analyzed for the best solutions, instead they are sifted for the easiest quick-fix solutions.
      And those like my young friend engaged as he was in learning something new, still get cheated in the process.

    3. CookiE_MonstA

      I don't think it's that funny that a gown up is still carrying the cross they picked up in high school AND using it as justification for hating on public school teachers. Did you know that most kids didn't have fun in school but we got over it instead of holding a petty personal grudge.

  21. mumbly_ジョジョ

    Speaking of child-labor union thugs, apparently Maine's Governor is painting over some offensive mural depicting the history of labor in Maine… in the Department of Labor lobby. It is so good to see that those governing our various states have their priorites in the right place, and are totally looking out for the American people.

    1. Jukesgrrl

      He says he's doing it because the murals are anti-business. I'd like to know who will be doing the work when business turns its back on labor. Did you ever see an owner try to use a shovel at a ground-breaking ceremony?

      1. mumbly_ジョジョ

        Yeah, funny story: it's not called the Department of Business. For some reason. Almost as though, gasp, workers are more vulnerable and needing of governmental protection than multi-millionaires.

  22. EatsBabyDingos

    The obvious answer is the God knew we were headed for gay marriage, so He gave us potato chips, flat screens and violent video games. Like planting corn in Iowa-it weren't hard.

  23. Doktor Avalanche

    Firing kids is one thing, 'hob'-ling them is totally dofferent (sic). And I'm all for it.

  24. KenLayIsAlive

    Why spend a billion dollars on education children, when you can spend a billion dollars on a cushy president title and salary and another stupid special interest PAC for yourself.

  25. KeepFnThatChicken

    I wonder if Michelle Rhee — while visiting my Tennessee last week — broke down in sobs because we want to leave science education open-ended enough to teach Jesus stuff.

    1. elviouslyqueer

      Oh no, because that goes hand-in-hand with her "fuck this public education shit. Let's convert everything to charter schools" mantra. Hell, I bet she even gave them some curriculum pointers.

  26. Steverino247

    I think our downfister was the kid who never got the jokes, picked his boogers in class and got beat up when he got off the bus.

  27. OkieDokieDog

    This would all be solved if we brought Jebus back into the classroom. Also; too his daddy.

  28. user-of-owls

    what if our sixth-graders all had bachelor’s degrees?

    They'd still get creamed by the Dutch sixth-graders in every sort of "bee" imaginable…spelling, math, geography, Aunt, etc.

  29. Pop_Socket

    It turns out demonizing teachers and making their job undesirable to competent people who would like to become them does not always magically make these test scores rise.

    It's tough to teach kids to have 1200 SATs when all the schools can afford are 800 SAT education majors.

  30. crybabyboehner

    "Rhee now describes teaching ability as something akin to an inborn talent, joking that no matter how much she practiced basketball, she could never play in the NBA like her fiancé Kevin Johnson."

    DUH. But does she think there is anybody in the NBA, no matter how much natural talent they might have, who hasn't spent years learning and practicing the game?

  31. ManchuCandidate

    Or pushed that "self esteem" bullshit. Some kids, mostly libertarians, idiots or morans or criminals (see Dunning Kreueger), have too damned much and not enough skills/intelligence. They need education to break'em down and make'em realize that they aren't as good as they think they are.

    1. prommie

      Fuck yeah! School isn't about content, its about socializing you to blindly take orders and sit in a cubicle all day doing meaningless shit for no good reason while the years of your life tick by and then you die. And the schools are doing a damn good job of it, too. Those that want to get ahead learn the most important life skills and job skills of all, apple-polishing, brown-nosing, bootlicking, sycophantism, backstabbing, and tattling. "Thats the greatest idea I have ever heard, boss, its too bad Johnson didn't follow your advice when he screwed up the Smith account last week." If you can put three of them in one statement, thats a "hat trick."

      1. jonzin

        That's why public schools were set up in the first place. Howard Zinn talked about how the schools were made with the oversight and collaboration of the industrialists to make sure that the kids learned how to follow orders, behave, not question authority, and know only the bare minimum so they didn't go questioning why they were getting paid 5cents for working 18 hours in the coal mine.

  32. crybabyboehner

    "Rhee now describes teaching ability as something akin to an inborn talent, joking that no matter how much she practiced basketball, she could never play in the NBA like her fiancé Kevin Johnson."

    Great analogy, considering there are three million teachers in the country and about 400 NBA players.

  33. horsedreamer_1

    Why has nobody thought of this until now? Wait, do the kids have a union too? THOSE THUGS!

    Not only is it a Union, it's a Trust. PTSA: Parent Teacher Student Association (or thus it were in my middle/high school(s)).

    Bring on the Shermanator!

  34. GeorgiaBurning

    "Injustices" meaning lack of speakers' fees and a four figure clothing allowance, I'm assuming.

  35. HELisforHEL

    Say there–I notice some Conservatard is now following my Intense Debate account…will my P's be destroyed now? Am I being stalked by an idiot? Is there a way to make him disappear? LOL

    1. elviouslyqueer

      I think that's "Biden: Impeach Obama." *waves at troll* It apparently finds our incisive commentary on charter school-whoring unemployed educational guru Rhee distasteful.

      1. trondant

        Betcha a dollar it's a freeper; they actively crash online "polls" that hardly anyone bothers to answer. It's a semi-organized pasttime over there.

        Seeing external reality line up with what's in their heads a little more than usual must save them bigtime on lithium refills.

    2. Limeylizzie

      Many of us are being stalked by him/her/it, don't worry we will all upfist you madly to compensate.

    3. mumbly_ジョジョ

      You are being stalked by an idiot, yes, and it won't destroy your pee, only downfist you serially as though it somehow matters.

      Hoo, boy, speaking if which, there he goes again. Seriously, the fact that this happens like clockwork mid afternoon on workdays sorta proves broader points about employment etc, not that illiterate fatsacks worried about the govmint getting in their social security and negroes in the white house are really an in-demand labor group even in the best of times.

    4. Failure_Artist

      I was going to say I have TWO conservative trolls stalking me (Stench of Liberalism and Unions Suck or something like that), but it seems they've disappeared. I don't think it was anything personal: they just follow everyone who comments here.

  36. Steverino247

    Yes, there are some really shitty teachers out there, but there are many more really shitty families. Hard to do well in school when your parents are fucking each other in some meth-fueled fandango while you're trying to study.

    1. Negropolis

      Is this like one of those "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?" thingies?

  37. Limeylizzie

    Just now I am watching the sexiest politico ever, Russlynn Ali, she is with the Dept of Ed and MrLimeylizzie and I are screaming over the insane sexiness of her, she is talking to that other bronze lovely, Tamron Hall , and it is like a really great porno.

  38. DerrickWildcat

    Kids Eat Free Night is responsible for a 140 Billion shortfall in Wisconsin! These little free ridin' socialists need to be reminded that they live in America…where YOU PAY for your meals and not take Government handouts!

  39. johnnymeatworth

    Well, we do need to keep a couple of junior colleges open for the future Sarah Palins to take one semester each at….

  40. jonzin

    Unlike some countries, we keep kids on the same track through high school. That means if you are dumb as a stump and might be better off flipping burgers than trying to go to college, we still want you to take college prep type classes. In China, if you aren't getting it, they put your ass to work. Obvs, the comparison isn't really fair. I think we should start weeding the little fuckers out and if they can't hack it, send them to learn gunsmithing or HVAC repair.

  41. Ken Layne

    And this post proves once and for all that Wonkette's demographics — which show an INSANE amount of grad/post-grad/higher ed but not the high income you would expect — are correct, because you're all a bunch of schoolteachers and professors.

    Allah bless you all, and no wonder you're so filthy-minded and funny at Wonkette, because that's NOT ALLOWED in the classroom.

  42. CookiE_MonstA

    Ok so, if some kids are born loosers, what should happen to them? Should we accept their inevitable crime spree and have cells ready for when they drop out? There is always a simple answer and a ready made solution and it's usually "Fuck 'em, I don't care!"

  43. HolyCow!!

    I once considered going into teaching. After learning the absurd requirements I'd have to meet and the hundreds of hours that I'd need to spend in classroom observation as opposed to working to earn money to pay the enormous bills I was racking up to pay for said college/classroom observation, I concluded it wasn't worth the investment even if I had the money.

    The students becoming teachers in my state (Virginia) are primarily from wealthier families. My family couldn't afford to pay all of my bills while I ran from school to school doing classroom observations nor could I work a job and do it.

    This is one of the reasons the pool of new teachers' backgrounds has become so narrow. It is nearly impossible to hold down a job and meet the requirements. Now throw in student teaching and constant criticism and you'll start to get the picture of why no one wants to go into teaching.

    1. Jukesgrrl

      …are primarily from wealthier families and well-qualified to present the propaganda required to keep the proletariat voting Republican. FIXED. Or maybe FOXED. Whatev.

  44. ttommyunger

    Well from what I read it's no wonder the kids can't concentrate on their studies. All the girls are too busy performing oral sex and the boys who aren't getting oral sex are fucking their hottie teachers. What the fuck? I went through sixteen years of public schooling without dipping my wick! There is no justice!

  45. Diabeetis

    What's even sadder is that a lot of liberals and Democratic politicians have bought into the charter school/standardized test mania themselves, especially after being duped by propaganda like Waiting for Superman (even as they rightly see Scott Walker as a monster). This is why I'm not exactly optimistic about things getting better once the Democrats are back in charge: They'll very likely be pulling the trigger on the gun that was loaded by the Tea Party.

    And meanwhile, the proggy blogosphere will keep on saying it's all the fault of libertarians who can't even win local elections.

  46. BarackMyWorld

    Everyone realizes that American test scores include special ed. kids, right?

    I administered the same state tests to my students classified M.R. as the kids in AP classes took.

    There's a separate test for kids with severe disabilities, but I had 9th kids in my class with IQs in the 60s and 2nd grade reading levels taking the regular state test (with modifications being extended time, testing in a small group).

  47. Negropolis

    If our country has so much money, why doesn’t it just fire the kids who are repeatedly bad at taking these tests?

    Detroit already does. They just put the "bad" kids in special ed, and when they get too disruptive or inattentive they send them to the human filing cabinets called "alternative" education centers. You know, the "schools" that are basically minimum lock-down prisons.

  48. awashinshite

    Governor of Maine has the solution – roll back child labor laws, put the little f***ers to work for low wages -solve 2 problems at once -scores go up , profits go up -problem solved

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