Those in charge don't really see children. They see test scores. Data. Opportunity. We are in the Dark Ages of Education in the United States.
The rhetoric and framing of the 'failing schools' testing and accountability movement has been brilliantly deceptive garnish with no substance. A favorite quote by W.B. Yeats comes to mind. You know it already but I think it bears repeating in these difficult times:
Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.