Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Dear President Obama

Testing children in every subject in every grade several times a year in order to measure whether their teachers have "added value" to their test scores is not going to improve student performance, teacher quality or public education.

Rather you have further narrowed an already slim curriculum with your Common Core Federal Standards that will soon be tied to national tests that every student in public school (though not students in private schools, like your daughters) will take several times a year.

You said during you January 2012 State of the Union Address that teachers should not teach to a test, that restricting teaching and learning to rote procedures like that would not be helpful to students or teachers.

And yet, this is exactly what your Race to the Top policy and No Child Left Behind waivers do by requiring teacher evaluations use so-called "student performance" measures based upon standardized test scores.

Unlike many teachers I know, you have already lost my vote. 

I am pretty certain you know exactly what it is you are doing with your education policy (trying to privatize the system, bust the teachers unions and increase revenue streams for your buddies in the tech companies, the EMO's, and the hedge fund/charter school industry.)

Nonetheless I wish to call you out today, publicly, for the cynical effort you put forth to destroy public education under the guise of saving it.

Frankly, I see little difference between your drone bomb campaigns in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and elsewhere under the guise of "destroying terrorists."

Both efforts - your public education policies and your drone bomb campaigns - bring about the opposite of what you purport to want.

With the drone bomb campaign, you say you want to destroy terrorists and make the country safer from terrorism, but all you do by indiscriminately dropping bombs on innocents all over the globe is create more resentment against the United States, more hatred of Americans, and more future terrorists.

Similarly, your public education policies are supposed to improve education quality for students, improve teacher quality and education outcomes for the system as a whole, but all your test-driven, fear-based policies have done is narrow the curriculum to just what is tested, drive excellent teachers out of teaching (who wants to be evaluated using a value added measurement with a MOE of 52%?) and hand over public schools to privatizers who aren't improving outcomes any better than anybody else (and sometimes doing a helluva lot worse).

I know there is a national letter writing campaign going on today to make you aware of the harm your education policies are doing.

I am joining that campaign with the caveat that I wouldn't vote for you in any case, not even if Mitt Romney were going to win my state.

I am done voting for cynical, dishonest politicians like yourself who purport to want one thing in public while crafting policies that bring about very opposite results.

That said, I do want you to know how destructive your policies are, how many teachers and students are holding you responsible and accountable for them now, and how more and more people are seeing through your cynical, dishonest, destructive governing.


Reality-Based Educator
Former Democrat Driven To The Green Party By Barack "Corporatist" Obama

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