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NCLB: Why Is Corporate America Bashing Our K-12 Public Schools? Authors Ask

No Child Left Behind means the opposite of what it says. It is a plan not to help every school succeed but to declare public schools failures and accelerate the use of vouchers—turning public education over to private, for-profit firms, says a new book Why Is Corporate America Bashing Our Public Schools?

The book, penned by teachers Susan Ohanion and Kathy Emery, examines the NCLB reforms and how the 2001 act is turning on public education. The reforms were designed to help poor, underserved kids in urban schools close the achievement gap with their mostly white suburban counterparts.

In the authors’ view, the reforms are a partisan, unprovoked attack on public K-12 education, thinly veiled with political rhetoric.

“We have all become prisoners of the rhetoric ...you can’t hear ‘public schools’ without thinking they are failing and need to be fixed,” the authors write. “Ordinary people without an ax to grind, people who haven’t set foot in a school for thirty years or more, will testify to failing public schools.”

They note, too, the very title “No Child Left Behind,” hijacked from the Children’s Defense Fund, has become the moral equivalent of the Pentagon’s “pacification.” NCLB is simply a plan to blame the victim: the government declares it’s leaving no child behind, so if a kid ends up on the streets after 10th grade, it must be his fault, they write. Emery has taught high school history for 16 years; Ohanian is a longtime teacher and free-lance writer.

Info: http://www.heinemann.com/shared/onlineresources/E00637/chapter1.pdf

— staff
AID for Education Report, CD Publications


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