Saturday, July 5, 2008

Anniversary of Some Words Worth Remembering

On July 12, 2006, Michael Winerip wrote his last education column for the New York Times, Teachers, and a Law that Distrust Them.

Here are some quotes from the piece that our politicians would do well to ponder:

Instead of helping teachers, for me it's a law created by politicians who distrust teachers. Because teachers' judgment and standards are supposedly not reliable, the law substitutes a battery of state tests that are supposed to tell the real truth about children's academic progress.

The question is: How successful can an education law be that makes teachers the enemy?"

...We need a No Family Left Behind Law. This would measure economic growth of families and punish politicians in charge of states with poor economic growth for minority families.

Under the No Family Left Behind Act, if states failed to make adequate yearly progress toward closing the income gap,

...the governors and legislators would be judged failing, and after five years, could be removed from office. This way public schools wouldn't be the only institutions singled out for failing poor children.

Finally, Winerip closed with a well-loved quote from William Butler Yeats and recommended it "as the official motto for a new, revitalized No Child Left Behind law."

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.
I couldn't agree more.

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