Thursday, August 21, 2014
Dante's Inferno of Educational Reform
How can ed. deformers construct with a straight face a world of pre-assembled student failure when they or their children are rarely subject to any of it? I would never wish it upon their children, but I wonder if a modern-day Dante might not find a special place for people of such hubris inside an educational Inferno of their own making. Some would surely be left in limbo. Others might enter another circle due to lust for tests, greed for profits, data gluttony, anger mixed with threats of fist-pounding-and-pushing-in-the-dirt violence, heresy against basic sound educational practices, fraud through data manipulation and treachery through the purchase of public policy.
One can just imagine who might be there and the contrapasso, or poetic justice, they might face. Some might find their mouths taped shut, condemned to repeatedly pull off the tape only to expose bleeding lips and another layer of tape against the backdrop of laughter. Others might vomit up test questions clearly above their cognitive abilities. Some might drown in the filth of their own junk-science data, sinking through quick sand with their pockets loaded down with nifty grant money. Others might find themselves sealed in a car with a "white, suburban Mom," condemned to continually test prep on a drive to destinations they will never reach, soccer practice, music lessons, a basketball game...
I am guessing such an Inferno would be Common-Core aligned, and Virgil would be only too happy to guide them through it. But a word for the very wise few, obviously aligned to the Common-Core, "Lasciate ogne speranza voi ch'intrate"...or for those more inclined to translations, "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here"!