|EWA meeting in Chicago|
Duncan said he expected states to make sure districts get enough students take the tests. “We think most states will do that,” Duncan said during a discussion at the Education Writers Association conference in Chicago. “If states don’t do that, then we have an obligation to step in.” -- Interview with EWA writersWhat a week! Edu-conferees are flowing in and out of O'Hare at a record pace. First their was AERA. Then EWA. And next comes NPE. Chicago is definitely the epicenter of corporate-style education reform and the revolt against it. The only one of these meetings where Arne Duncan would dare show his face was at the Education Writers Association (EWA) National Seminar. It was there that he threatened to take action against the growing opt-out movement.
Yes, Duncan is threatening federal intervention if states fail to put an end to the massive testing boycotts. No one is sure what form that intervention may take. Some fear economic reprisals. But I worry about an Iraq-style invasion.
|Arne's army is equipped with these military assault rifles.|
Duncan has had to apologize for using his own particular racial theories to describe parents who are critical of over-testing as “white suburban moms” who were upset because their kids were doing poorly on new, more rigorous exams linked to Common Core.
“All of a sudden, their child isn’t as brilliant as they thought they were and their school isn’t quite as good as they thought … and that’s pretty scary,” Duncan said.Duncan claims that annual standardized exams beginning with 3rd-graders are essential for tracking student progress and monitoring the so-called "achievement gap". He pooh-poohs the idea that so many high-stakes tests are "too stressful" for young children or that current testing policies take too much time and resources away from teaching. He blames parents for exaggerating the traumatic effect that testing is having on their own children.
He says the tests are “just not a traumatic event” for his children, who attend public school in Virginia. “It’s just part of most kids’ education growing up,” he said. “Sometimes the adults make a big deal and that creates some trauma for the kids.”Yes, I'll bet there's hardly any stressful testing at Arne's kids' progressive suburban school. It's the same at the Obama kids' private school in D.C.
You see, it's parents, not the testing, stressing out the children. So Duncan is preparing to take action" on his own. Maybe it's time to take to the hills and hide the children. Oh, I forgot. We have no hills in ChiTown.