Orwell Award Announcement SusanOhanian.Org Home


Anti-testing Letters

[Susan notes: Gary Ravani makes a point well worth repeating--teachers can out-teach billionaires. They can and they do.]

To the editor

From Gary Ravani

Published in Press Democrat (11/22/2012)

Michael J. Petrilli ("What we learned about school reform," Monday) obviously misunderstands what is going on in education nationally. The real story is what the voters learned about anti-teacher school "reform." Teachers went door-to-door to do what teachers do best -- that is, explain to voters that the anti-teacher agendas were simply efforts funded by billionaires to side-step paying their fair share in taxes and harvest public funds for private coffers.

This paralleled what occurred here in the Proposition 30 and Proposition 32 campaigns. Billionaires can outspend teachers, but teachers can out-teach billionaires.

Petrilli mentions U.S. performance on international assessments where our country scores in the middle of the pack. What he doesn't mention is that U.S. schools with fewer than 10 percent of students living in poverty score the best in the world. Even the schools with up to 25 percent of kids in poverty tie the best in the world.

And those countries, such as Finland and Singapore, that are the high performers? They all have powerful teachers' unions. The same goes for the highest achieving states in this country. It is the lowest-achieving states, in the deep South, where teacher unions are not allowed by law.

Gary Ravani is President, Early Childhood/K-12 Council, California Federation of Teachers

More Anti-testing Letters


FAIR USE NOTICE
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.