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SAY IT ISN’T SO! TEACHERS AND TESTERS CAUGHT FIXING STANDARDIZED ...

Regular readers here know that every now and then I have to rant about the deplorable state of Amairikun edgykayshun and the blockheads running it (they're the ones usually with Ed.D. behind their names). Well, today's rant is brought to us courtesy of my Transhumanism co-author, Dr. Scott D. deHart who, as opposed to Ed.D's, has a real doctorate in a real academic discipline from a real, though small and unaccredited foreign academic institution, and who spotted this one on Faux News and decided to share it. I have to pass it along to all of you watching the 2016 (s)election theater get underway. As you probably guessed from the title of this article, the subject concerns cheating on one of Amaircuh's (I'm following the Webstir's Dickshunairee spelling here) many standardized tests:

Jail for 9 of 10 ex-educators in Atlanta test-cheating case

Let's not (sic) some things from this article; first, this:

"All but one of 10 former Atlanta public school educators were sentenced to jail time Tuesday in a widespread conspiracy to inflate student scores on the state's standardized tests, and the judge called the case 'the sickest thing that's ever happened in this town.'" (Emphasis added)

Well, silly me, I would have thought General Sherman's march on Atlanta was the sickest thing to happen to the town, but I digress.

And then, this:

"Former Superintendent Beverly Hall was among those indicted, but she did not stand trial because her lawyers argued successfully that she was too sick. She died from complications of breast cancer."

Now, the impression left by these two statements is that such corruption in the education and testing "business" is a one of a kind thing, even though it extended all the way up to a superintendent. We're left with the unstated proposition that this must be something unique to Atlanta, and therefore, possibly to big corrupt city governments and school districts. It's a one off; a hit and miss thing. It is not, therefore, the system itself, and Amairicuh's intoxication with the trappings of pseudo-education - teacher certification, doctors of "education" (I won't mince words here: it's a pseudo-discipline, and its practitioners, without exception, are fast-talking quacks), and a Russo-Soviet philosophy of bureaucracy befitting the progressivist and quasi-Marxist principles from which all this claptrap began (a philosophy of bureaucratic agency that would make Trotsky blush, that philosophy being "why have just one bureaucrat when three can do the job so much more inefficiently?")... it is not any of this that is at fault. No sir. The problem is not the system. This is an isolated case. Nothing to see here. Move along.

But if you think that such tinkering with the scores is unique to Atlanta or that it's something in Atlanta's drinking water, think again. In 2009, a former mandarin of the testing "industry," Todd Farley, who had served a stint at the notorious Educational Testing Service (the Frankenstein brainchild of James Bryant Conant and Henry Chauncey) published a book that I recommend readers here read if you are concerned about just the effects of standardized testing alone on Amairicun edgykayshun (leaving out certification, Doctors of Edubabble, group leaders, facilitators and all the other nonsense and quackery that goes with it). That book's title says it all: Making the Grades: My Misadventures in the Standardized Testing Industry (San Francisco: Berrett-Hoehler Publishers, Inc.: 2009).

Farley documents an "industry" rife with corruption and score tinkering, from his days at the very bottom of the rung, entering test scores into computers, all the way up to the upper reaches of Chauncey's monster. The fun thing about the book is reading all the pseudo-academic terms that were invented to cover these "score adjustments," or (to employ a term from physics massively out of context), "renormalization." (The technical jargon in edubabblese is almost as bad: "recalibration.") One may summarize these "techniques" as simply being a case of "when the results don't match the predicted statistical model, make the results fit." Of course, the devil is in the details, and Farley's book has those in abundance, including run-ins with a bureaucratic persona who, in spite of the changes of name, sex, age, parentage, and location, remains the same across all contexts: there to preserve his(or her) job, and to ensure that the "results" fit the "rubric" dictated by some regional Education Soviet.

The bottom line here, as elsewhere, is that Amairicuh's grand experiment with progressivism in education - with bloated bureaucrats drawing enormous salaries while teachers are faced with more busywork, state and federal requirements, filling out reports, attending useless and (deliberately intended) mind-numbing time-wasting meetings, while adjunct professors barely make a living and are paid on a semester basis (imagine having to budget your day to day living when your paycheck only comes once every four months!), and without benefits - its big name universities whose academic standards are questionable... all of it, all of it, is going to come crashing down around their heads for one simple reason: real education can be had elsewhere, and at a fraction of the cost. And no, I'm not talking about "online education"  either. I'm talking about the real human interaction with those teachers and professors that can change lives by motivating people to think for themselves, and to challenge the status quo. Amairicun edgycayshun has simply become a gatekeeper for a variety of orthodoxies and collectives, nothing more, orthodoxies from "the Egyptians built the Great Pyramid, aligned it with optical precision, using copper saws and diorite slurry", to  "string theory is the only accepted theory in current physics," "Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone," or (one of my favorites that I heard from an education student when I taught European history in college), Adolf Hitler started World War Two because he had a bad childhood and an abusive alcoholic father. The few remaining teachers and professors of any real intelligence and moral fiber and grit in the Amairicun system - from kindergarten to the post-graduate level -  all have their own horror stories like this. "Gender" has replaced "sex" on forms (a gross misuse of the term gender), "it's" is now the possessive of "it," "quote" (a verb) is acceptable in Amairicun English for "quotation" (the noun), The Ukraine has become simply "Ukraine" because of some silly linguistic pandering for political purposes because some Ukrainians are upset about the way the English language works, and on and on it goes. And, of course, the main Dummycrook and Republithug presidential contenders, Billary Clinton and Jeb of the famous shrubbery dynasty, are both on board with the next program of nonsense, Common Core.

Or, to summarize the grand failure that has been Amairicun edgycayshun since Dewey, Conant, Chauncey and their ilk succeeded in inflicting their "vision" upon the rest of us, in the words of a friend of mine, "Are we really surprised that this happens? And for those who do not cheat, the reality is that it is a failure to teach students anyhow - it is memorization by repetition - short term memory (the quickest dropped), and thus cheating the actual purpose of "education" which is more in the asking of questions leading to self discovery and experience as opposed to teaching FOR tests, taking practice tests, gathering information that is to be tested on and teaching for the test. At the end, what matters is the score, not so much how one arrives at it nor concern for what becomes knowledge that is useful."

And that's the bottom line: cheating and fraud are endemic to this system. Or, to put it plainly enough so that even a graudate of an education program or a Doctor of Edubabble can understand it, the system is fraudulent from top to bottom.

Of course, maybe I'm being optimistic that such people can understand the meaning of "fraud" and their own narcissistic roles in perpetuating it.

See you on the flip side...

 

22 thoughts on “ SAY IT ISN’T SO! TEACHERS AND TESTERS CAUGHT FIXING STANDARDIZED ...”

  1. ohhh!the academic mindedness .its astounding how the fundamental principles for the illuminated ones just keep hammering away at syntax.give me a break? since when does not the fire within become the imperative? the problem is self evident.we are told to go to diversity training classes while standardizing everything that is not nailed down.no wounder the crazy making,it is good to be in a one legged ass kicking contest.do not differentiate !!!! zero tolerance for intolerance!!i rest my case. no capitols?

  2. Culture a society to the point that they lose desire to know the truth, so that “thinking” will be done for them. Disable their faculty of “care” to minimize resistance. Create a certain mode of logic by which the premise fits the prescribed mandates. Guilt them into the idea that their living standards are too high, therefore, it should be leveled down with that of the others (familiar?). Perpetuate the belief that we are still creatures of violence (through wars) thus, we’re not deserving of a more efficient source of energy. And if that’s not enough, destroy or exploit any nation on the verge (or capable) of development to make that point. Present/provide extreme ideals and systems so that there seems to be nothing on balance for compromise.
    “Common Core”.. the choice of words here gives a sense of dread. Core: foundation, substance, intrinsic, quintessence, soul-spirit.. Common: (look it up!)
    I came across an idea that said “human nature” is a misnomer.. and that “human condition” is rather appropriate.

  3. I had the benefit of reading some of my fathers history books and a English history book published in 1916. Very interesting I even found history books that were thrown away when I lived in NYC the most interesting parts of them were the maps they told you more than the texts themselves like the distance between the Roman Empire and Han China dividing them was 100 miles at their greatest extant. As to the American education when has not been the stuff your flush down the toilet at least it was easier to educate yourself when I was in public school there was the school then the public library. Also brick and mortar bookstores and second hand used bookstores and books were cheap to buy on a tight budget. Why I posting this late I had no electricity for the last eight hours it just came back on at 6pm EDT.

  4. When I went to school I didn’t have a calculator, or a smart phone, or a computer or spellcheck, so school books were “IT”. Nowadays kids have all the smart tools to educate themselves, and what do we get when a “teacher” steps in and tries to cheat the system, lunatics. So in a few years when planes start falling out of the skies, and elevators begin crashing, then we might want to look at mental ability and ways to put it into practice……oh wait!!!!!!!

  5. The most informative and inspiring classroom I’ve ever been in is Giza Death Star 101. Dr. Farrell and our members(including Daniel) are so smart. They constantly challenge my world view. The vidchats provide so much information and valuable resources that academia never provided me. Thank you everyone!

  6. Things must be learned before they are corrected.
    Unfortunately, the learning part has been thoroughly corrupted; as if it were being geared to become an exclusively For-Profit model.
    School’s for young minds that direct not only knowledge of the world, but our knowledge of Ways If Knowing as well. Many an education myth has become a way of thinking that is so DEEPLY embedded in our consciousness that it has become, for all practical purposes, invisible. For many of us here at this site we can immediately see the “strangeness” of these “new” techniques in educational policies. But for many, there is the loss of the sense of strange that is, sadly, a sign of adjustment. Therein, the tragedy to the extent of which “they” have been changed.
    There is an event horizon all too near in the brick & mortar education industry. The knowledge that has been enclosed behind the walls of academic institutions whose price of admission excludes all but the wealthiest. The fact is that the near zero marginal cost if education is growing into a virtual Commons they themselves are creating; as they recognize they can’t hold-out, while others rush-in[call it – Greed].This “internes/education model will increasingly become the new teaching paradigm.
    So the “networking/connections” made in these “current’ closed-wall environments will continue; probably shifting onto another exclusive plane, where the up-and-coming elites can continue to connect in very small circles of power.

  7. Being that a very dear friend has been a second grade teacher for forty-five years, and is heavily involved with elementary school teachers and all these meetings and hoops and standardized tests and the dolts in charge of enforcing it on the world… I have this to say about that:

    You must be in a very good mood today. Spring must’ve sprung.

    Your optimism is unwarranted. I have had to sit with bevies of these people in their preferred social settings. Potlucks. BBQs. Craft fairs. They do NOT grok fraud, the fraudulence of their careers. No. Fraud is a forged note from home. Rearranging the desks into artful configurations instead of the boring old rows is good for the developing right brain. Each teacher has a thick binder from which he or she teaches. It’s ALL worked out, but the part about the kids’ stubborn tendency to have things like personalities and personal problems.

    Somehow the older teachers end up taking on the dear little apprentice androids, slow to lose their interest in the world, to help give them coping strategies for getting through school without being labeled deficient.

    A huge percentage of the kids don’t get enough to eat, healthy or unhealthy, and it’s torture to give them holidays. So a very big part of elementary school educating is focused on making sure the kids EAT, even on school holidays. Most of the teachers old enough to loathe the mental regimentation are retiring or already retired subs — in heavy demand because teachers have to attend so many mandatory functions someone has to hold down the fort for them — try to compensate for this horrendous state of affairs by fitting in activities that stimulate the kids’ minds between the rote memorization bits mandated in the binders, but they’re getting too old to keep it up now.

    No. Really. The young ones are mostly CONVINCED Common Core is a genius revolution we should be militantly demanding for our children. I wish I were exaggerating.

    1. Many here at this site I’m sure wish along with you that it was just an exaggeration. Alas, it paints a picture all too representative of a ongoing common core tragedy.

      Many an old timer would probably sum it up this way,
      “Sorry, but your looking up a dead horse’s ass.”

      1. Long as they’re putting people in jail for scoring creativity while bankrupting themselves to insure the kids have food and pencils and clothes and are socialized well enough to have a prayer of staying out of jail, the younger teachers will remain outright bellicose about the virtues of Common Core… and the older ones will only curse under their breath.

        1. There are a good teachers left who got into it with a deep commitment to teaching & their love of learning. However, some are in it for profit.
          And sadly, some of the younger ones have been taught “wrong”, and are now teaching through that corrupted industry-wide vein.
          Ironically, some have even paid for the privilege of their disillusionment.

          1. The “Stepford Children” all grown up now. They also embrace technology, it’s their Hero, in so many ways.
            The cabal always plan their agendas decades/centuries ahead of time.
            Bill Gates invested billions in CC, what a philanthropist. He told the WA Post “It would be great if our education stuff worked, but that we won’t know for probably a decade.” I do believe they know exactly what to expect. He’s not after money, he wants their young minds. Creative and Higher Order Thinking, indeed.

          2. Excellent analogy Sandy.
            Also, the new for profit protocol is driving force that influences more than many can readily see. In Its quest for power & profit – research, experimental designs for new products, talented individuals w/ creative aptitudes – implicitly invalidates the purely functional view of such technology. The values of this corporatized monster have become embedded in the research agendas, designs, & technology sought after.

  8. Given that the purpose of school is now indoctrination, not education, those in charge are doing everything they can within their abilities — though of course they are hobbled by their lack of education, being products of the very system they now run. After several cycles of rinse-and-repeat, we are now well on our way to idiocracy.

    Einstien, who was no slouch in the aphorism department, remarked that: “Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned at school.” Problem now is, nothing worthwhile is taught anymore and so students forget just about everything while being indelibly imprinted by mediocrity.

    1. “We are now well on our way to idiocracy” amen to that. The school system is just day care for big boys and girls. I wouldn’t be surprised if one of these days nap time was made mandatory

  9. My wife and I were going thru my grandparent’s attic perusing the old books. There was a late 40’s early 50’s 8th grade math book. It was the equivalent of modern freshman college level course. But, there were a serious differences. The lessons concise and to the point. Busy work was not included. As it presented each lesson in a logic methodical manner, at the end of each chapter were real world word problems. So, the student had a practical example of how to use what they had learned. Our system has become divorced from reality.

  10. Wow, I’ve always thought it was the outsourcing of all the employment to third world slavish labor that was the reason all these college grads couldn’t find work in their respective fields. Now you tell me it’s because they simply don’t know anything…
    Go figure.

  11. It’s not all bad. NYC Dept of ED education is hiring, “Peanut Paras” . You’ve guessed it – to sit alongside a student with a peanut allergy all day to ensure the budding scholar doesn’t croak from eating the tainted nut.
    Not Qualified? Apply for the somewhat less prestigious “Substitute Peanut Para”.

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