This week, there’s been quite a buzz in education. Or perhaps it just seems that way since we have a new Superintendent of Schools in Clark County Nevada.
So lets start with President Obama feeling that part of the problem is that many schools are using outdated textbooks. Has basic reading or math changed recently? Will your child be laughed at for using an outdated form of Algebra? Sure, our understanding of science changes all the time. And foreign languages evolve — Latin excepted. As for history, does it matter inasmuch as they will never get to the last chapter anyway?
The same day, E. D. Hirsch argued that the new educational standards we are trying to formulate won’t amount to a hill of beans without a good curriculum to ensure that kids actually learn it. He’s an expert in both education and cultural literacy with a bibliography longer than my arm, so ignore him at your peril.
One problem with education is that the people who teach the teachers how to teach are failing to address the basics: things like classroom management and how to effectively meet the objectives of reforms like standardized testing. Or, “how to keep a job as a teacher.” In fact,”only 49 percent believe state governments should adopt the ‘same set of standards and give the same tests in math, science, and reading nationwide.'” Sorry professor. Colleges and modern employers expect a high school graduate to know certain things.
In Closing: Rest in Peace Tony Curtis; Happy Birthday Hoover Dam; health insurance changes; it’s not over ’til the crazy lady sings; I’ll have Honda on asphalt with mayo; Erik Scott leads to ch-ch-ch-changes; you can’t have both; on Social Security and Women; Kohl‘s is creating jobs (that’s more like it); why it’s a “bad thing” for household debt to decline (if you are an economist); once more the rich get richer; Dear Ben Stein, stop whining; worker’s health costs to rise 12% next year; and maybe the reason it “seems” that Americans don’t want jobs as migrant farm workers is that they don’t speak Spanish, don’t have “tractor skills” and like coming home to their families every night (certainly a barrier for single parents!). But we would rather pretend that it’s because we uppity high school and college grads are too good for back-breaking labor in an environment where only lip-service is given to labor laws.