Saturday, December 18, 2010

No Child Left Behind

I wish I could make this a rant, but I lack the eloquence.

A high school in Rhode Island is firing all the teachers, or maybe only 70% because the school's performance is inadequate. The teachers interviewed talked about how they get involved in their students' lives, being aware of whether they're eating or have a place to live. They talked about the poverty facing the population of their school. The administrator said, "It's fine to take them home for Thanksgiving, but I want to see better test scores."

What do we expect? How can we ask these people to learn math and care a fig for history when they are not sure whether they'll eat today or wonder about the security of their housing?

Those children got left behind a long time ago, and now we want to punish these teachers for a societal ill. I do NOT know the answer for how to help children learn what they need to learn in order to get a leg up, but I know firing a school full of teachers is at best misguided.

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