Cool Kids vs. the Cavemen Update
Don't cross our union masters...errrrrr...allies again cool kids!
(Guest Post by Matthew Ladner)
Politico has more on the Cool Kids vs. Caveman power struggle.
This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 13th, 2010 at 2:12 pm and is filed under politics, school funding. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
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I get half of your metaphor: the “cool kids” part.
But instead of “cool kids vs. cavemen,” I think it’s “cool kids vs. nerds.”
The reform crowd is the “cool kids” – the ones who were always searching for an easy way out, for a shortcut, who counted on their charisma and sex appeal to get them out of trouble when they didn’t make the grade. They’re the ones who end up being the politicians, the ones who assume that their winning smile and really cool friends will paper over the fact that they never actually did the hard work, that the shortcut didn’t make the road any shorter, that those nerds they beat up or put down are going to be their bosses in a few years or decades.
The pro-public-education crowd, though, aren’t the “cavemen” – they’re the nerds. They’re the ones who put in the hard work, the ones who stay up all night studying even though they’ve already got an A, the ones who stay after school and do the extra credit. They know that true learning isn’t going to get a “quick fix” from magic bullets like charters or vouchers or merit pay, and that like cheating on the test, it’s only going to hurt in the long run. The only way to truly succeed is by taking the long, hard road, by actually doing the work.
I detect the possibility of some unresolved issues from high-school. My advice…let it go!
There are of course legions of wonderfully capable, hard working and self-sacrificing people working in the public school system. It is unfortunate that many of those whom they have empowered to speak on their behalf in policy debates continue to defend an unacceptable status quo. I would not characterize teachers as either cavemen or nerds, but “caveman” or “reactionary” seems like an appropriate term for the majority of education union leaders.