“Standards!” “Accountability!” “Raise the bar!” “Rigor!” “No excuses!”
The slogans and catchwords of would-be school reformers are exploited by politicians, broadcast by radio talk-show hosts, plastered on car bumpers, underlined by newspaper editorialists, elaborated in the popular press, and taken seriously by much of the general public.
They’re also favorite themes of those leaders of business and industry who, in the1980s, began to elbow professional educators aside and work through Congress to take over education reform. There’s little or nothing wrong with American education, these leaders are certain, which can’t be made right by tightening institutional screws. (more…)