Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Judy Garland And Mickey Rooney In The Age Of Common Core

Imagine, if you will, an updated serial version of Babes in Arms, the 1939 movie musical that starred Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney in a plot that is described like this at Fandango:

This fun-filled spin-off of the Rodgers & Hart Broadway musical by the same name, features Judy Garland and Mickey Rooney as two young children of vaudevillian parents who aren't included in their parents travels, so they set out to produce a show of their own. Rooney's the driver here and he's up against the administrators of a fogy state-run trade school, who think the whole show idea is nonsense. A listening judge gives them 30 days to put on the show and prove they don't belong in the jail-like school (run by Margaret Hamilton). The rest of the action involves the highly talented kids successful efforts to not only stage the show, but to bring the whole troupe to Broadway. ~ Rovi

In our updated version, Judy and Mickey are five years old and attend the Harley Avenue Primary School in Elwood, N.Y.

The administrators of the fogy state-run trade school (the villians in the 1939 movie) are replaced with an interim principal and four kindergarten teachers at the Harley Avenue Primary School.

The prison-like trade school still exists, but this time, it's slightly progressive because it's not running a Common Core-aligned curriculum - and Margaret Hamilton still runs it.

The plot runs like this:

Judy, Mickey and the whole gang at Harley are dying to put on the annual year-end kindergarten show that every kindergarten class since Nixon has been putting on, but this year, there's a problem.

The show's been canceled for not being "rigorous enough."

That's right - in the Age of Common Core, if something at school is not directly related to the rote learning and rigorous test prep of the Common Core State Standard Reform Movement pushed by the NY State Education Department, the NY State Board of Regents, NY State Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the entire legislature, it just can NO LONGER HAPPEN.

And so, a letter comes for young Judy, a letter which she can not read herself despite the Common Core close reading and argumentative essay writing skills she's been given in place of play time and nap time at Harley Kindergarten, and her mom is reading it to her and her friend, Mickey:

JUDY'S MOM (Reading Aloud): Our reasons for eliminating the kindergarten show are simple. We are responsible for preparing children for college and career with valuable lifelong skills and know that we can best do that by having them become strong readers, writers, coworkers, and problem solvers. Please do not fault us for making these professional decisions that we feel are in the best interests of the children.

JUDY: Mom, what does this all mean? We can't do the show?

MOM: No, Judy, the show has been canceled so that your teachers can make you stronger readers, better writers and skilled problem solvers.

MICKEY: How can they do this! Who died and made them John King?

JUDY: Yeah! How dare they tell us we can't put on the show! We ALWAYS put on a show, every time out! That's what we do! We're Judy and Mickey, for heaven's sakes!

MOM: Not anymore, Judy. Shows are over in the Age of Common Core. Rigor only.

MICKEY (snapping his fingers): Say, Mrs. Garland, did you say they want to make us into skilled problem solvers with this Common Core rigamarole? Lemme see that...(snatches letter)

JUDY: Are you thinking what I'm thinking, Mickey?

MICKEY: I sure am, Judy! This Common Core crap is already making me into a better problem solver cuz' all I want to do is get out of it! (turns to Judy's mom) What would you say, Mrs. Garland, if we just up and quit this Harley Avenue school and go back to the jail-like school Margaret Hamilton runs?

MOM: Well, I don't know...

JUDY: Sure, mom, it's perfect. We don't do anything at Harley other than read the same story over and over, something about some guy named Bernie Bakoff or Madoff or something like that and we have to hear this stupid thing over and over and over...

MICKEY: Yeah, Mrs. Garland, and they took our nap mats away from us and replaced them with iPads which we have to use to take our tests on...

JUDY: Yes, mom, and they never let us have pretend time anymore because we're always supposed to write essays even though none of us know how to write one or even what an essay is...

MICKEY: And don't forget how every story time is followed up with rigorous, text-based assessment questions and exit slips...

MOM: Really, no pretend time...nap mats replaced with iPads...exit slips...this can't be good...

MICKEY: Seriously, Mrs. Garland, and now that they've canceled the one thing we were all looking forward to, the one thing that was keeping the whole gang going, the end of the year show...well, there's just no reason to go back to that old school now!

JUDY: Sure, mom. That prison-like school Mrs. Hamilton runs is bad, but its nothing like the jail that is Harley Primary in the Age of Common Core!

MOM: But kids, you can't want to go back to the state-run prison school, the one run by evil, evil Margaret Hamilton? Don't you have to work on the chain gang there? That can't be better than the Harley Avenue Primary School in the Age of Common Core and Rigor, can it?

JUDY and MICKEY (in unison, both looking into camera): Oh yes it can! And it will be! It's got to be!

STAYED TUNED FOR THE NEXT INSTALLMENT OF JUDY GARLAND AND MICKEY ROONEY IN THE AGE OF COMMON CORE. 

WILL JUDY AND MICKEY GO BACK TO THE STATE-RUN PRISON SCHOOL AND GET A DECENT EDUCATION (PLUS PUT ON A HELLUVA GOOD SHOW IN THE PROCESS.)

OR WILL THEY HAVE TO GO BACK TO THE HARLEY AVENUE PRIMARY SCHOOL AND GET AN EDUCATION FILLED WITH RIGOR MORTIS, er, RIGOR (BUT NO SHOW)?

COME BACK NEXT WEEK TO FIND OUT!!!

2 comments:

  1. You are a genius, RBE. This is just great.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Been a while since I've written a parody. Out of practice writing the jokes...but I think the piece gets the point across, which is, canceling this kindergarten show to ensure the 5 year olds are college and career ready is absurd.

      Delete