As an educator I am once again dismayed by the fact that the choice for education secretary is not a classroom teacher but a person who prefers to be anti-teacher union and believes that education is best served by having bonus programs built around standardized testing. For numerous years now it has been proven that standardized testing is not a true evaluation of learning. In fact, testing based on multiple-choice questions taken from trivial curriculum items does nothing but enrich the pockets of test-developing magnates. A true educator knows the invalidity of such approaches to education.
Furthermore, the incoming administration would be advancing education if it showed a support for workers' rights by writing legislation whereby those states that refuse to allow collective bargaining by teachers and other public employees are outlawed. For example, in 1959 North Carolina made it illegal for public employee unions to contract bargain. This has especially hurt the education profession in that state, as it allows public education to be tossed around as a political football by politicians who want simplistic answers to the educational shortcomings in their state.
Dennis J. Townsend
Dec 23 2008 - 1:51pm