Demonizing teachers, breaking unions, privatizing education… for fun and profit.
..recession and its corresponding shock to school budgets is being used by corporations to maximize revenues, all under the gauzy banner of “reform.”
via The “Shock Doctrine” comes to your neighborhood classroom – Education – Salon.com.
“…as U.S. school systems are laying off teachers, letting schoolhouses crumble, and increasing class sizes, high-tech firms are hitting the public-subsidy jackpot thanks to corporate “reformers'” successful push for more “data-driven” standardized tests (more on that in a second) and more technology in the classrooms. Essentially, as the overall spending pie for public schools is shrinking, the piece of the pie for high-tech companies — who make big campaign contributions to education policymakers — is getting much bigger, while the piece of the pie for traditional education (teachers, school infrastructure, text books, etc.) is getting smaller.”
Here in Virginia, where Governor McDonnell has very close ties to for profit education companies like K12, the expensive and questionable love affair with high tech has escalated in recent years, at a time when Virginia teachers’ pay continues to rank in bottom half nationally. Here’s the NYT article Sirota references.
Of course, McDonnell isn’t alone, the Obama administration, sadly if not surprisingly is right in the thick of the high tech education gold rush. For exapmle:
…”(S)omehow, according to the Obama administration, standardized tests are the perfect tool to judge and punish struggling schools and the teachers who work with low-income kids, but they can’t be used to similarly judge technology products that are making Obama’s high-tech donors lots of cash.”