Reading and Math Curtailing Other Topics, Study Finds
By Maria Glod
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, February 25, 2008; B02
The No Child Left Behind law has led many elementary schools to spend more time on reading and math and less on social studies, science, art and recess, a report released last week finds.
The Center on Education Policy’s survey of 349 school systems across the country bolsters anecdotal evidence that the 2002 federal law’s goal of having every child proficient in reading and math by 2014 has forced schools to focus on those subjects, sometimes squeezing out other lessons.
“This accountability movement is having a significant impact,” said Jack Jennings, president and chief executive of the center, based in the District. “School people are feeling the pressure to do better and raise scores. But they are stuck with the amount of time they have.”
Who in the hell is running this national scholastic “Ship of Fools?” And the following statement lies out there like road-kill;
“It certainly puts the question before Congress. Is there a price being paid for raising kids’ math and reading scores?” Jennings said.
A question before Congress? Get real. Teachers ought to crawl under the nearest desk, having to admit that they are unable to teach math and reading while carrying a normal curriculum.
Band, music classes in general, theater, art, physical education, even recess–all of them fell to what we were lied to was budgetary restraints. Now, with these time-consuming (and absolutely necessary) classes out of the picture, we’re told that teachers are unable to teach even the skeletal remains of what their criminally negligent School Boards have left them.
Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.), chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, has said he plans to introduce a bill this spring to reauthorize the law with changes.
There hasn’t been a Kennedy in a public school in four generations. Teddy Kennedy (who espouses alternative energy until the windmills appear off his beloved Cape Cod) now has the audacity to espouse his own version of a schooling he wouldn’t be able to stand the sight of either.
I am tired of the old and tired, the beholden and paid-off, the confounding teachers’ unions, the rich old broads who dictate how and where and when and for how long the poor will be educated. We did a far better job 150 years ago in one-room schools.
Why? Because someone gave a damn. Teachers cared, the older kids taught the younger, at the end of eight grades kids could write essays and do essential arithmetic. They had a working knowledge of classical writing and still got the cows milked or sold newspapers. Parents gave up the precious labors of their children (and they were precious, either on the farm or at a job) to school them.
We will have schools that work when do-gooders, unions, politicians and a thousand special interests get the hell out of the way to let teachers teach.
Then perhaps parents will feel empowered enough to crawl out of the rec room and find out why their kids are turned on by computer games and turned off by school. In the meantime, Teddy, please get your neanderthal and personal-interest nose out of the public interest in schools.