In essence, David is saying that education suffers from testing because testing takes away time from the "magic" of learning. Was there profound learning before we instituted tests? This testing fascination, both pro and con, is a red herring.
I'm tired of the magical, mystical. Old people have taught young people from time immemorial. There is nothing magical about it. The fundamental problem we have is that since the gov't is in control of what and who ought to be taught, and since we are all the gov't, and since we share no consensus as to what and who ought to be taught - teachers are fighting a losing battle.
Every interest group and every gov't education bureaucrat thinks a child's brain is their real estate. Music lovers, art lovers, fitness addicts, nutritionists, sports junkies, social scientists, peace activists, STEM proponents, special education parents, etc., etc., etc.
It's time to call bullsh_t.
Centralized gov't education is a failure and cannot be reformed. Even though everyone believes the gov't ought to fund education, the gov't ought to end the "accountability" illusion. Give every child a scholarship, just like we do for college bound students. The gov't is terrible at predicting the needs of society. So let's make them stop trying.
If you are worried about some kids using public money to go to a religious school, stop being a bigot. If a religious school can teach a kid to read and write on the 12th grade level while the kid is in 12th grade, that is what we all ought to care about.
If you want your child to apprentice with a welder, there ought to be a place you could make that happen. If you want your child to work on an organic farm and learn how to be productive, there ought to be a place for that. If you want your child to follow the other lemmings, prepare for college, go six figures into debt at a liberal arts college, drop out and hitchhike across America, more power to you. You know best about your child.
And we need to come to terms that students aren't equal. There needs to be someone who gives a damn about the kids who are incapable of performing engineering. No amount of magic or mysticism will give a kid the ability to use differential equations.
It is time to respect productivity, even menial productivity. It is time to shame people capable of being productive but who choose not to be out of some sense of entitlement.
Three of my children have an aptitude for scholastics. It looks like one might not. I'd much rather he learn a trade where he can earn a living than waste his time sitting in a classroom learning how to "think critically," or paint a still life or tackle the wide receiver after he catches the skin of a pig inflated to 20 psi.
The man hours and money wasted on "education" is staggering. Really the money is secondary. When the government focuses everyone's attention on "getting an education" so that some corporation might hire them and/or turning everyone into a cross between William Shakespeare and Picasso, the full and beautiful panoply of human productivity falls by the wayside. Years of kids' lives are wasted with nearly nothing but prom pictures to show for it.
So sure. Boycott the tests. But it might be time to boycott the education industry and make sure your child knows at least one marketable skill before he/she turns 30. Becoming cultured is wonderful, but it needs to come second to being able to make one's way in the world. Culture is the fruit of productivity. All of the mystical, magical believers seem to believe the opposite. And these people think religion is make believe?
Who needs enemies with friends like this? Did you read David Cook's piece? More moralizing and hand-wringing. Some folks need to just go have a beer. I know I need to from time to time.
And notice the leftist rabble still in the streets protesting the "corporate" games. I bet they are not rooting for their countrymen. You can't appease adversaries. Britain gets to teach us that lesson again. If America adds socialized medicine, formally creates a labor party, adopts sharia courts to oppress our immigrants and criminalizes religious beliefs as "hate speech," we, like the British, will still have leftists taking to the streets, defaming the statues of our past heros and moving the country "forward." The failures of that era to come will continue to make headlines and illustrators will continue to mock those who question whatever "leader" that is taking us down that wrong path.
Anybody read the bill?
"War on Religion" - an apt title for this comments section.
Evidently stereotypes, scapegoating and demagoguery is OK if against Christian people. At least the current janjaweed are limited to the Sudan.
I wonder what the NAACP will think about this one?
I know a number of thoughtful liberals and they know a number of thoughtful conservatives. It is the thoughtless ones among each persuasion that crow the loudest about the perceived shortcomings of the Other. When you exclude others from your circle of acquaintances, the others take on the qualities you fear most about yourself. If you're worried most about being seen as clever, you point out the dullness of the Other. If you worry about being seen as stingy, you complain about Other's fair share. So let's let Clay project his fears about his own ineptitude onto the general viewership at Fox. Unlike Clay and many of his minions in these comments, that while there may be very many uninformed Fox viewers (I guess the same can't be said of MSNBC - they don't have enough viewers for there to be "many" of anything), the thoughtful among us know there are also many informed ones.
That seems eminently reasonable.
"And do not get me started on untrained children that will grab or hit dogs and have no better sense to stay away from a dog's food bowl."
Wow. More empathy for another species. Just wow.
There is a segment of our culture that is sick . . . self-loathing to the point of hating humanity. I'd bet if the irrational, unconditional love of animals that our culture seems to flirt with existed at the dawn of civilization, we'd still be naked, hungry brutes with wood plates in our earlobes digging in the dirt for roots and dancing around stone totems by the light of the moon. Oh wait - I think a sizable number of those folks are still around.