Mercedes Schneider here examines the Data Quality Campaign.
Why is there so much demand for student data? Why now?
As she explains,
Corporate education reform is designed to turn profits for privatizers. That said, in corporate reform, there are two huge money makers that will ”outprofit” all other profiteering: standardized testing, and data sales and storage.
The two are inextricable. Consider the mandates for state participation in Race to the Top (RTTT). In order to compete for RTTT funding, states were required to demonstrate both a standardized testing dependence and establishment of a “statewide longitudinal data system.”
While the federal government insists that reform is being driven “by the states,” it is clear that the USDOE is actively clearing the way for reforms that it supports, one of which is the collecting of an unprecedented amount of data on America’s school children.
There are many funders of this unprecedented effort…
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In her “Diving into the Wreck,” the speaker of Adrienne Rich’s poem explains, “the sea is another story/the sea is not a question of power.” Critical response to this poem often includes some ambiguity about just what the wreck constitutes in the poem, but the speaker is clear about her purpose:
I came to explore the wreck.
The words are purposes.
The words are maps.
I came to see the damage that was done
The education reform debate, however, should be classified as a question of power, and that debate is not ambiguous about the wreck—U.S. public education. To understand the education reform debate in the twenty-first century, a guide appears necessary in order to provide foundational differences among competing narratives about the failures of public education and the policies recommended for overcoming those failures.
First, all reformers are driven by ideology, and thus, those ideologies color what evidence is…
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New York’s Teacher of the Year testified to the State Senate Education Committee that the education evaluation system made it impossible for her to be rated “highly effective” because of the “dysfunctional implementation” of the Common Core standards.
Kathleen Ferguson, the New York State Teacher of the year, was also the teacher of the year in her school district, and has won several awards for excellence in teaching.
Yet, she told a Senate Education Committee hearing on the state’s new Common Core standards, under the new rules, even she could not score a rating of highly effective in the new teacher evaluations.
The reason, she said, is that her marks were based in part on student test scores. She teaches second graders with special needs, who are often behind the level of other children in their grade. But the new standards permit no exemptions for her students.
“This system does…
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