Paul the psychic octopus sez: “Did I tell you so? Let me count the ways.”
(Guest post by Greg Forster)
And so it begins! Over on NRO, Heather Mac Donald is stirring up a culture war over the new national science standards:
One doesn’t need to be a global-warming skeptic to be appalled by a new set of national K–12 science standards. Those standards, developed by educrats and science administrators, and likely to be adopted initially by up to two dozen states, put the study of global warming and other ways that humans are destroying life as we know it at the very core of science education. This is a political choice, not a scientific one. But the standards are equally troubling in their embrace of the nostrums of progressive pedagogy.
I’m sure Mac Donald is right – I certainly trust her more than I trust the cronies who are writing the standards. But the larger picture here is the dramatic increase in the politicization of school curricula that national standards inevitably creates. Of course, the very existence of the school monopoly is itself a neverending geyser of political headaches and occasional massive warfare over the curriculum. But nationalization multiplies the problem a hundredfold.
As a parent living in Florida and an avid reader of JPG’s blog, I would like to know what the school choice revolutionaries think of Florida’s newly proposed “trigger law” which would allow parents in a poorly performing school to turn the school itself over to a charter. While at first this seems like another step toward increased parental choice, at second though, it doesn’t actually expand the choices available to parents in the long-run because switching from one management to another, doesn’t ensure that the new management continue to improve. Anyway, I’d like to know what y’all think.
I wrote about the pros and cons of parent trigger here. Item #1 in the “con” department was: “For the moment, the system is only promoting management change, at best involving charter operators, which is an improvement but is inadequate.” Great minds think alike!
Thanks, Greg! I’ll take a look.