November 12, 2007

Beyond Parody

From today's San Francisco Chronicle:

Summit called to address racial disparities in academic performance

Nanette Asimov, Chronicle Staff Writer
Monday, November 12, 2007

Every time state schools chief Jack O'Connell thought he was doing something to close the achievement gap, a new round of test scores showed that black and Latino students had gained no ground on their white and Asian American peers.

Like many educators, O'Connell assumed the culprit was poverty. Then he noticed an even wider ethnic disparity among students who were not poor.

The realization was a jolt: Being black or Latino - not poor - was what the low-scorers had in common. And it changed everything.

O'Connell now believes that widespread cultural ignorance within the California school system is responsible for the poor academic performance of many black and Latino students in school.

He offered the example of black children who learn at church that it's good to clap, speak loudly and be a bit raucous. But doing the same thing at school, where 72 percent of teachers are white and may be unfamiliar with such customs, will get them in trouble, he said.

The achievement gap is "absolutely, positively not genetic," O'Connell said. "All kids can learn. I'm saying it's racial."

He said that until last year, he presided over a school-ranking system that let ethnic groups of students achieve at a slower pace than schools as a whole had to do.

"We institutionalized lower expectations," said O'Connell, who ended the double standard last year. "We're all guilty."

O'Connell and top educators in the California Department of Education have taken hours of racial sensitivity training, which O'Connell wants to extend to teachers statewide. He's also reorganized the state Department of Education to focus on raising the test scores of black and Latino students.

And now he is taking it to the people with a two-day conference on race and the achievement gap.

Hundreds of experts from around the country will offer 125 different panels with such titles as "A Mindset is a Difficult Thing to Change," and "Policies that Support the Academic Development of Urban Black Males."

Some 4,000 people - teachers, principals, lawyers, school secretaries and others - will pack into the Sacramento Convention Center on Tuesday and Wednesday for what is being billed as an Achievement Gap Summit.

Keynote speakers include talk-show host Tavis Smiley; "Stand and Deliver" actor Edward James Olmos; and Nicolina Hernandez, who founded the San Joaquin Valley University Project while in high school to help students apply to college.

Also on center stage will be Glenn Singleton, the coach O'Connell hired for the Education Department's racial sensitivity classes. Singleton runs a San Francisco consulting firm called Pacific Educational Group and is the author of "Courageous Conversations about Race: a Strategy for Achieving Equity in Schools."

Contrary to widely held views that parents play a strong role in whether their children do well academically, Singleton believes the schools, not parents, are the biggest influence.

"If we were to say that black or brown kids don't perform as well because of their parents, we're saying black and brown parents aren't as effective as white parents," Singleton told The Chronicle. "That's pretty much a racist statement."

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

51 comments:

Hal K said...

"We're all guilty."

I hope David Vallejo is reading this.

CEP said...

"Some 4,000 people - teachers, principals, lawyers, school secretaries and others - will pack into the Sacramento Convention Center on Tuesday and Wednesday for what is being billed as an Achievement Gap Summit"

They've made a damn industry out of it. Money will continue to drive this no matter the results. How pathetic.

Josh said...

Black kids learn to "clap,speak loudly and be a bit raucous in church"...so naturally that learning stays with them in the classroom and they are loud,clapping and raucous in school! Of course! The old "Sticky Theorem" of black male behavior! But ya gotta wonder how it is that black males being taught to be quiet in school 5 days a week wouldnt "stick" on Sunday,leaving them quiet and studious in church! Anyway,this guy is on to something! Its "absolutely" not genetic.This man is very wise. Theyve got a conference going--a TWO DAY conference,minmd you,with James Edward Olmos there;theyll get to the bottom of this!

Anonymous said...

Contrary to widely held views that parents play a strong role in whether their children do well academically, Singleton believes the schools, not parents, are the biggest influence...


Singelton's comment would be hysterical if it wasn't so sad and stupidly wrong. Blacks and to a lesser extent hispanics aren't very interested in academics, forget racial intelligence differences. Now the asians are interested and they are all not phd material either, just regular people and their kids who want to learn and succeed and realize that this country is full of opportunity if you are willing to actually make an effort. The blacks and hispanics aren't even trying. There are asians who come here and the parents can't sling a word of English, but they sure as hell make sure their kids do and that they study hard, very hard and those kids do well some of the worst "academic" environments in the nation. Why? Because the parents are pushing them. With the NAM's it is always someone else's fault, most of all white people's.

PRCalDude said...

I'll go ahead and say that parenting is poor amongst black and latino parents. Not only have I observed that their children generally run amok with little supervision, but just look at the illegitimacy rates. Of course, these are the faults of whites also, aren't they?

I actually believe it is our fault. We subsidize bad behavior through welfare, free medical care, and other government handouts while at the same time telling non-whites that we're the cause of their problems.

Reticent Man said...

Reason #984 why my kids won't be going within a country mile of schools.

Anonymous said...

The part I thought was funniest was the echo chamber they were going to have that they were calling 'Courageous Conversations about Race: a Strategy for Achieving Equity in Schools'.

Right. Somebody bring up Larry Summers or James Watson and tell me how that works out.

fifi said...

"O'Connell now believes that widespread cultural ignorance within the California school system is responsible for the poor academic performance of many black and Latino students in school."

If we only knew enough about the cultures of the underperforming, they'd be geniuses. I'm going to disagree with O'Connell. I think the emphasis on being able to communicate in Standard American or British English is the true source of this institutionalized racism. And it's worldwide. Did you know that Eastern Europeans and Asians have also embraced this tyranny?

Since many Americans aren't even of British ancestry, I propose that we stop requiring children to learn the racist English language. I'm busy now trying to decide exactly what my linguistic heritage is and will communicate in Gaelic or German or ? in the future. I expect Steve to provide a free translation service for me because I'm special!

Anonymous said...

"If we were to say that black or brown kids don't perform as well because of their parents, we're saying black and brown parents aren't as effective as white parents," Singleton told The Chronicle. "That's pretty much a racist statement."

There will never be any progress as long as our fear of being called "racist" is greater than our desire to speak & hear the truth.

Anonymous said...

The "average behavior" of Asian parents is to believe in the power to "hard work" in order to both learn and improve in academic subjects. American parents (both white and black, it seems) believe in "innate talent" and that some skills just can't be taught. While this may be true for outliers of athletic ability, it's just not true for average academic subjects.

Half Sigma said...

"If we were to say that black or brown kids don't perform as well because of their parents, we're saying black and brown parents aren't as effective as white parents," Singleton told The Chronicle. "That's pretty much a racist statement."

So how does this guy respond to the known fact that when children are tested at age 5, before any formal schooling begins, there is already a one standard deviation difference in test scores?

***

So Steve, do you think that NCLB will eventually force people to acknowledge that some races have a different median intelligence?

ogunsiron said...

Sad, stupid, preposterous but pretty much a typical product of the feeble minds of educators .
What can you expect from people who're basically no smarter than an average high school student ?

Anonymous said...

Not Jaime Escalante, but Edward James Olmos. Talk about the Potemkin village...

dearieme said...

I blame the witches, myself.

EW said...

..."Stand and Deliver" actor Edward James Olmos...

It's worth pointing out what happened to the *real* Stand and Deliver teacher.

http://www.reason.com/news/show/28479.html

Anonymous said...

Singleton runs a San Francisco consulting firm called Pacific Educational Group and is the author of "Courageous Conversations about Race: a Strategy for Achieving Equity in Schools."

That's pretty funny.

eh

tggp said...

"Stand and Deliver" actor Edward James Olmos
Now that is a riot. You would think the actual teacher who was able to educate kids would be who they were interested in, but you would be wrong. He was booted out by the educrats! They do not care about results, they care about feeling all warm and fuzzy, which an actor can accomplish.

Mark said...

Beyond parody, and in so many ways

Keynote speakers include talk-show host Tavis Smiley; "Stand and Deliver" actor Edward James Olmos

Because Tavis Smiley knows all about educating kids. And if you really want to solve he problem don't bring in the real Jaime Escalante - bring in the guy who played him on TV!

He offered the example of black children who learn at church that it's good to clap, speak loudly and be a bit raucous. But doing the same thing at school, where 72 percent of teachers are white and may be unfamiliar with such customs, will get them in trouble, he said.

In high school I had white teachers, and I had black teachers; there weren't any Asian teachers. The black kids did poorly no matter who was teaching the class, and the Asian kids managed to thrive despite the so-called "lack of role models."

Singleton runs a San Francisco consulting firm called Pacific Educational Group and is the author of "Courageous Conversations about Race: a Strategy for Achieving Equity in Schools."

We've seen all the movies ripping "war profiteers." I'd like to see a few movies ripping the race profiteers. I'm sure Singleton would play a leading role. I wonder where he sends his kids to school? To the inner city, or to private schools?

From Singleton's web page:

Singleton and his associates design and deliver individualized, comprehensive support for school districts in the form of leadership training, coaching and consulting. Working at all levels from the superintendent to beginning teachers, PEG helps educators focus on heightening their awareness of institutional racism and developing effective strategies for closing the achievement gap in their schools. In 1995, Singleton developed “Beyond Diversity”, a nationally recognized seminar aimed at helping administrators, teachers, students and parents identify, define and examine the powerful intersection of race and schooling. The “Beyond Diversity” seminar has provided a foundation for PEG-lead principal leadership development and teacher action-research work. Today, thousands of seminar participants throughout the country practice the agreements and conditions of “Courageous Conversation” as they struggle to usher in culturally proficient curriculum, instruction and assessment.

Anonymous said...

Stupid squared.

Let me get this straight. Blacks and Hispanics are doing lousy in school. Some genius figures out that it's because of their behavior in school. So the solution is: get the white teachers to understand that this is just how blacks and Hispanics behave and accept it, and oh by the way, raise their test scores or you're a racist. Whites are always being asked to modify their ways and thinking to suit blacks and Hispanics, but blacks and Hispanics are never asked to meet even minimal standards of behavior that might actually help them do better.

Hawnky

Svigor said...

Contrary to widely held views that parents play a strong role in whether their children do well academically, Singleton believes the schools, not parents, are the biggest influence.

"If we were to say that black or brown kids don't perform as well because of their parents, we're saying black and brown parents aren't as effective as white parents," Singleton told The Chronicle. "That's pretty much a racist statement."

Ehehehe. "It must be so because I couldn't stand the alternative."

That's a sure path to success, yeah?

I think parents are the single biggest environmental factor in their children's academic success; parents who will only accept the best from their kids can go a long way toward their academic success. Hard work is more important than ability.

Anonymous said...

Singleton's comment about parents is mind-boggling. Steve's post title says it all -- "beyond parody." Singleton and his enabler Jack O'Connell are grasping at straws, and they look foolish doing so.

Meanwhile, lots of white readers of the SF Chronicle -- riddled with guilt -- nod their heads in agreement that they are to blame for blacks' poor test scores.

Midway through her freshman year, my daughter transferred from a high school with about a student population that was 40 percent black to one that was about 50 percent Asian-American and 45 percent white.

As you might imagine, the difference between these two campuses -- roughly five miles apart in distance -- was staggering, both in terms of student behavior and academic performance.

When she announced she was transferring, her teachers all congratulated her and counseled that her new classes would be much further ahead than the ones she was leaving, even after just one semester!

Why? They of course wouldn't say it, but my daughter was quick to figure it out. The black students at her old school were disruptive and unfocused, compared to the Asians at her new school who were there to learn and who made it clear they wanted rigorous coursework.

Any white person who has spent time in black environments can tell you that there is a different set of standards for appropriate behavior.

This is particularly true in schools, where acting out, loud voices, physical confrontation and horseplay all impede the learning process.

When you add this to a general cultural disdain for education and IQ issues, you get ... well, people like Jack O'Connell struggling to make up PC reasons for the "achievement gap."

Justin Halter said...

Isn't school segregation the logical conclusion of his analysis? Since white teachers with their white cultural expectations of children sitting down, listening, and quietly working apparently holds the black kids back, the obvious conclusion is to protect the black kids from those oppressive white teachers, right?

Unfortunately, I have already seen his theories permeating the school system. As a math teacher, I was supposed to be sensitive to all the "multiple intelligences", so some kids are to learn math with singing and dancing, or writing and journaling. And of course, it would help to learn about all the great minority mathematicians of the past, like those Egyptians who knew how to knot cords to make right angles!

What? You say the ancient Egyptians weren't black? What, are you some kinda racist???

tommy said...

I don't know whether to laugh or cry.

Proofreader said...

Your motto comes handy here, Steve:
To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle. - Orwell

tommy said...

Theyve got a conference going--a TWO DAY conference,minmd you,with James Edward Olmos there;theyll get to the bottom of this!

Yes, and with Tavis Smiley center stage, how could they not solve this problem?

Good God! This can't be real. I must have clicked over to The Onion by mistake.

Jim O'Sullivan said...

The achievement gap is "absolutely, positively not genetic," O'Connell said.
"All kids can learn. I'm saying it's racial."

Huh?

C. Van Carter said...

Bringing in Olmos cracks me up ("I'm not a teacher of inner-city kids, but I played one in a movie").

I'm not sure if we want to publicize this guy, but the Federal Way, WA school board has (had?) a race realist on it:"Federal Way School Board Member Charles Hoff, who told an audience in State College, PA (not surprisingly the home of Penn State) that it had “a far better gene pool” than the district he represents. State College is a mostly white, middle to upper middle class community.

Hoff said that because of having several smaller high schools within the Federal Way school district, our test scores are among the highest in Washington State.

Instead of attributing this fact to more one-on-one attention, student’s efforts or stellar teachers, Hoff went on to make the argument that if Federal Way students can achieve high test scores while attending small high school, imagine what the sons and daughters who come from “a far better gene pool” would accomplish.

Since Hoff’s remark came to light, those familiar with Hoff’s views said that this remark was not uncharacteristic for Hoff."

Alex said...

"If we were to say that black or brown kids don't perform as well because of their parents, we're saying black and brown parents aren't as effective as white parents," Singleton told The Chronicle. "That's pretty much a racist statement."

Why must they cruelly take from us even our most palatable diagnoses? More parental involvment is supposed to be our soft sell!

Jack said...

The achievement gap is "absolutely, positively not genetic," O'Connell said. "All kids can learn. I'm saying it's racial."

Achievement gap = racial
Racial = genetic
Achievement gap ≠ genetic

Interesting logic.

Alex said...

"Like many educators, O'Connell assumed the culprit was poverty. Then he noticed an even wider ethnic disparity among students who were not poor."

You notice how there's not a lot of effort to put this assumption to rest among educators and their media? I know the article on the whole reads like a parody, but that bit could be found in any half-way serious article on education.

I mean, no one who works in education should ever have this assumption at this point. And no journalist should ever report it as though it's an understandable premise and the fact that it doesn't pan out in reality is some interesting new development.

Later in the article: "Still others doubted that poverty should be dismissed as the main cause of the gap." But that's followed with no argument at all, just some educrat saying it can't be race because that would empower racists.

tommy said...

The insanity continues:

Curriculum and achievement tests are also Eurocentric, Singleton said, despite the state's efforts to purge all bias.

How do Asian kids ever succeed in such an incredibly Eurocentric environment? I just can't figure it out.

"I never heard people say they don't want to work with those kids," Vogel said. "They say, 'I want to work somewhere where I have enough materials, where the heater works and the roof doesn't leak, and where there's a manageable class size.' "

My understanding is that Oregon, unlike most states, actually distributes money to each school on a per pupil basis. Yet blacks and Hispanics still fail to succeed in Oregon just as they do everywhere else. Scratch that theory.

"The danger of calling it 'race' is that that could lead some to conclude that certain races aren't capable of learning. We don't buy that."

Yes, we need further research to figure it out but we can conclude without such research that it isn't a racial issue. We don't and won't buy that explanation. Can't make us.

That topic is missing from O'Connell's achievement gap conference. But student mental health is the "pink elephant" in the room that no one talks about, said Pia Escudero...[a]bout 30 percent of children living in violent urban neighborhoods have post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD...

PTSD: not just for veterans any longer! Everyone has it. You know, I can think of another pink elephant no one talks about.

Meanwhile, "race" is still a four-letter word to many educators.

That's the one!

quo vadis scipio said...

ideology is what causes civilizations to rise and fall. adopting faulty ideology can drive any civilization straight into the ground. pc ideology is a poison pill that wastes our blood & treasure in iraq; opens our borders to enemies; destroys freedom of speech and intellectual inquiry; et cetera.

Little Timmy said...

::O'Connell now believes that widespread cultural ignorance within the California school system is responsible for the poor academic performance of many black and Latino students in school.::

It's funny how these things Sailer puts up look so reasonable and *normal*, until you activate a flicker of criticality. It's a super-easy Magic Eye picture, where you initially see the vaguest, dullest outline of boring folly, and then it becomes gradually more ornate and masterpiece-like. "See the sailboat? It's real easy." "No...uhm, that looks like any artic-...wait...wait, yeah. yeah. YEAH!"

In the realm of concreteness, all I get is that students should be allowed to...er...clap, and not get in trouble, cuz they learned it in church and such (1 hr a week vs. 30). I think that's...the most definite policy-change implied, aside from widespread "sensitivity training," (?) I'm sure you'll attract more first-rate educators this way. Doesn't make teaching in an inner-city school seem like even more of a nightmare to me. "ARE YOU SENSITIVE ENOUGH? WE NEED THESE TEST SCORES UP! KIDS CLAPPING? NOT PAYING ATTENTION? DON'T GET MAD WHATEVER YOU DO! THAT IS BOURGEOIS EDUCATIONAL PRACTICE. TOO MANY DETENTIONS THIS WEEK." What else could the sensitivity training be? Don't create an adversarial relationship? There aren't a lot of places you can go with that philosophy...

They'll be Dizzy with Success, I'm sure. Sounds like great fun. You're going to get the cream of the crop. I say this, of course, since a kind of first-rate instructor could probably actually animate the students' potential a little. I guess there's no room for "the kids are clapping because the lesson sounds like gibberish at a statistically-higher rate..."

Good thing he's seen all the data and KNOWS is "absolutely, positively not genetic." I mean...what, there's not a 15% chance? 20%? That's how you can tell people are gone on this issue. If you're fortunate enough to talk to somebody who'll talk about it, ask them what they think the chances are! Usually they'll say 0, which is MIND-BOGGLING. They're categorically incapable of estimating such a thing.

tommy said...

More politically correct insanity: radio station vice president declares labeling a wanted Hispanic rape suspect "Hispanic" would be racist.

Anonymous said...

What exactly is the 'racial sensitivity training' all about? I mean, if it is not spending extra time with minority students...
Anyway, this issue will be fun to watch!
O'Connell may be the next Nobel price winner! :-)

Anonymous said...

We obviously need the moral godsends of Sailer's crowd to shit on black and hispanic kids, yep.

Anonymous said...

You guys should read the comment section after the article. You'll find even in this bastion of doctrinaire identity mumbo jumbo, the comments read a lot like the comments here. The truth is out there and you'd be surprised how few people don't acknowledge it, at least privately.

Tom Merle said...

The conference is dealing with a half truth, to be sure. But that doesn't discount the "culture of misbehavior" whether or not it flows from genetic predispostions, or is involved in a constant biological feedback loop.

If the findings of Judith Rich Harris are to be taken seriously (The Nurture Assumption), then home life plays a minor role; Even for Asian students who may get much more prompting from their peers who reinforce the message from home.

Harris described her theory in The Wilson Quarterly (Winter 1999): "There is a great deal of evidence that the differences in how parents rear their children are not responsible for the differences among the children.'' She added, "The evidence I've assembled in my book indicates that there is a limit to what parents can do: how their child turns out is largely out of their hands.''

"Children learn separately how to behave at home and how to behave outside the home, and parents can influence only the way they behave at home. Children behave differently in different social settings because different behaviors are required.''

Peer groups and the culture are powerful forces. "According to my theory,'' Harris wrote, "the culture acts upon children not through parents but through the peer group. Children's groups have their own cultures, loosely based on the adult culture . . . Anything that's common to the majority of the kids in the group may be incorporated into the children's culture, whether they learned it from their parents or from the television set.''

tommy said...

The truth is out there and you'd be surprised how few people don't acknowledge it, at least privately.

Yes, the truth is out there. Unfortunately, for the conference attendees, the truth is out there.

O'Connell, Escudero, Tavis please join us back here on Earth!

Anonymous said...

I see where all this is heading:
It's just a matter of time when teachers grading minority students with lower grades will be labeled as racists! It seems, that the process has already begun.
Guess what, many teachers then will want to have their life easier, so they'll start giving minority students better grades just to avoid such labeling. Consequently it'll serve as a proof, that O'Connell was right, afterall! :-)
I'm telling you, the Nobel price for O'Connell mentioned in my previous post may no longer be a joke. He is determined, that minorities' academical improvement shall happen one way or the other...

Bill said...

I wonder why white people even bother to teach in public schools anymore. Must be momentum. I've got a couple teachers in the family, but they all work in private education, and the schools they work in charge upwards of 20k per student.

I can't afford that, and the public schools in Seattle, despite the fact that the city's population is about 85% WaA, are abysmal. I think putting too much of the blame for poor schools on large minority populations tends to miss one of the biggest factors in the disintegration of the American public school system: ideological deviation from reality.

Parents can't get away from the schools fast enough here. You don't know whether your child will be taught American history, but you can be sure they will learn about gay families, Islam and the heroism of illegal immigrants. They may never learn about Pearl Harbor, Bataan or Iwo Jima, but they will watch Schindler's List. They may not ever learn that Thomas Jefferson authored the Declaration of Independence, but they will learn that he owned slaves.

For reading, Huck Finn is off the list, but the pornographic Color Purple is required. Poetry? Forget Poe, prostitute Maya Angelou, who writes about enthusiastically performing fellatio (ever wonder why the profs liked her so much?), is the real genius.

Really, that's how it is. That isn't blacks' or Mexicans' fault. The truth is, the blacks and Mexicans don't care what their kids are being taught, and that's a big reason the administrations love them. It's no secret, really, that blacks and Mexicans are just happy someone else is watching their kids during the day. That's what they tell me to my face when I ask them if they're worried about the schools.

Recently, I spoke with a checker at the local Safeway, a young working-class white mother with five kids, and asked her what her experience was with the local public schools. She said her oldest child was so upset by her experience in a mostly-minority public school that she had to send her to Montana to live with her grandparents so she could go to school there. People talk about lowered expectations for minorities and all that, but for the most part they seem to be having a fine time there. How come nobody gives a damn about the abuse white kids in these schools have to put up with? Is that how they plan on leveling the playing field? Unfortunately, I am afraid it is.

All the high-minded discussion of advantage and disadvantage may seem academic, but ultimately the rotten fruits of ignoring reality fall on the heads of those who actually must attend these schools. We should try to remember that they are little kids, and they never oppressed anyone.

As for the blacks and Mexicans, they seem a lot happier than the little white kids in public schools. So what if they get low test scores? We are entitled to the "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness," not absolute parity, and especially not at the expense of the young, innocent and politically powerless.

little timmy said...

::We obviously need the moral godsends of Sailer's crowd to shit on black and hispanic kids, yep.::

Personally, I haven't effectively squared any of this data with the real world, but I enjoy the truth, independently. Without irony, I believe this puts me a couple gradations down from bondage-fetishists, in sheer numbers.

I sense your big-cultural Superego coming home to roost in this rarified domain of rationality, that you've implicitly been forced to accept, through sheer innate respect for ideas. HEY! What's all this, then?

If it's going to get ugly, God bless all the anti-racism campaigns, and God bless evolutionary psychology, which should be a grade-school class someday. Seriously, all the anti-racism was not only to the good, but it proceeded like the best possible life-cycle of a Utopian fallacy...it undercut innately intuitive styles of reasoning, much to the general good.

That doesn't change what's probably more or less true about human races. All this hubbub is likely hubbub because a lot of people really kinda already know what's true, kinda like it doesn't matter what we say, because people already act like it's true.

Martin said...

"He offered the example of black children who learn at church that it's good to clap, speak loudly and be a bit raucous."

Yeah, that's the problem with all those hard-case ghetto kids in Compton, Oakland, and Hunters Point - too much church-going.

Contrary to widely held views that parents play a strong role in whether their children do well academically, Singleton believes the schools, not parents, are the biggest influence."

That may be true - it is certainly unlikely that fathers play an important role for black pupils, at least 70% of whom don't have a father living at home, often don't have a father who is even at liberty to visit (i.e. incarcerated) and occasionally, isn't even living at all (murdered).

Anonymous said...

"...young working-class white mother with five kids..."

If you are a working class white (or middle class white for that matter) you don't count and your concerns are not important. If you are interested in quality education for your kids through public schools that you finance, then you are most likely a racist who doesn't appreciate diversity.

bad attitude said...

Can't perform well on the test?

Get rid of the test!

I wonder if O'Connell is some naive dufus who really believes that addressing the cultural issues unique to black or Latino students (yet not for Asians who overcome their own cultural issues at school) will enable these kids to perform better on standardized tests. Or is he simply laying the groundwork for the accountability free holistic type curriculum where performance is measured subjectively based on things like amount of participation and attitude. Follow this with suspension of the SAT to determine eligibility for entrance to certain colleges and the achievement gap will disappear (or even be reversed).

I know Steve isn't fond of No Child Left Behind but I relate it to the battle being waged between those of us who want school performance measured by standardized tests such as the NAEP and those who want to determine achievement subjectively. When NCLB was first introduced, I imagined that Laura Bush was behind it winning the battle for phonics based reading programs as well as the ability to continue using objective tests to make schools accountable for what they're teaching and how. I realize now NCLB has other implications but my first response to it was that it was a conservative educational coup.

Anonymous said...

It's hard not to see this as a conspiracy by some (highly intelligent people) to prevent others from doing well by foisting this shit on them.

Especially when you know that a couple of highly intelligent groups have methods that they don't talk about in public for making sure their kids really achieve.

keypusher said...

This is a good example of the limited impact of articles like the one that just appeared in the New York Times quoting Malloy and Half Sigma. Not, of course, that the NYT article would somehow revolutionize the thinking of a California educrat in a day or two. Rather, that articles like this appear every single day, all over the place

Joe said...

In a sense, Ocnnell's right. His example of black kids learning to be "a bit raucous" at church shows some 'cultural ignorance.'

Mr. O'Connell -- go attend some black churches. Try to find one in which the few kids in attendance are taught to be "a bit raucous."

While you're at it, get a copy of Bill Cosby's new book, and start reading.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
It's hard not to see this as a conspiracy by some (highly intelligent people) to prevent others from doing well by foisting this shit on them.

Especially when you know that a couple of highly intelligent groups have methods that they don't talk about in public for making sure their kids really achieve.

11/13/2007 10:56 AM


There's a saying that in a poker game, "if you can't figure out who the patsy is, then YOU are the patsy". Those poor deluded blacks are the patsy. They are the ones getting harmed. But they do not realize it.

Marc said...

CA Schools Superintendent Criticized For Alleged Racist Remarks

tienda said...

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