Not Life And Death

I already noted that Checker Finn’s take on Diane Ravitch’s new book would be the most important thing written about it. So everyone else is playing for second place.  Here is my view on what’s good and what’s not from TNR’s roundtable discussion with Diane and others.

2 Replies to “Not Life And Death”

  1. So you just don’t like it when Ravitch uses the same rhetoric technique against NCLB’s magical non-solution. *chortle*

    Painting with a broad brush how “accountability” got into our lexicon. Don’t stop now! After all, it is the age of “think for yourself” and common sense. Don’t let complexity get in the way of applying common sense approaches to all your troubles and blaming things that have very little to do with the problem for everything you find evil in your world.

  2. At the link, Andy writes: “[Ravitch] paint[s] a broad portrait of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) as “test and punish” but ignore the complexity of the policy and its implementation. States, for example, have made an astonishing number of poor implementation decisions that have done more to turn the law into a caricature than anything in the statute has.”

    As a policy wonk, Andy must obviously understand that policymakers are responsible for both intended and unintended consequences of their policies. Clearly, states had incentives to make these “astonishing number of poor implementation decisions.” Andy’s right: the statute doesn’t specifically say anything about dumbing down standards to meet 100% proficiency and narrowing the curriculum. But critics of the law predicted that would happen before the ink was dry on NCLB. You don’t get to only pick the parts of the law that worked and ignore the unintended consequences!

    So Andy, as usual, is being deliberately obtuse in order to further policies he can’t be bothered to defend rigorously.

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