Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Ranting for Homework

My assignment became a rant.

The prompt asked me to write 1 page about a problem I see facing the educational field today.

I emailed my advisor, saying essentially--

Dear L________:

I am not a yet a teacher. I feel presumptuous telling the field of education what it needs to fix. Please advise.

She wrote back, saying essentially:

Give it a try.

I thought a bit. And here's what I ended up thinking. I ended up thinking that education is becoming more and more corporatized, with the large-scale assessments (aka standardized or "bubble" tests) intended to improve Accountability and Integrity, and with the charter schools being all "charter" with their fancy CEOs, high salaries, and quickness to fire your teachin' ass in the name of Accountability.

And then I thought: Who the hell is holding Wall Street accountable? And what credibility does the corporate world have preaching to education about accountability?

So I wrote a page and a half just like *that*, essentially a rant. I attempted to be scholarly and conclude with a couple paragraphs about how We Need to Examine the Relationship Between Business and Education and Analyzing the Goals of Education, to wit:

1. producing worker bees?
2. allowing students to have a wider intellectual life than their future monotonous jobs?
3. producing people who can analyze and imagine new approaches to business, home, education, the state? (I like this one)
3a. or at least having the skills to grapple with the ethics of daily life? (like this, too)

What do you think?

Rantaciously yours,


Narya said...

The "businessification" of schools dates back to just after the turn of the last century--you can read debates in the NEA meeting annals about how the Businessmen who ran the school boards and schools wanted to Taylorize the schools, and the teachers pushed back. (If you would like to read those chapters of my dissertation, let me know.)

kStyle said...

Send them! Send them!