Who needs to read, anyway?

The College Board announced last week that this years SAT reading scores were the “lowest on record.” In fact, their scores in math and writing also went down. E. D. Hirsch, Jr. pointed out that the problem is that, instead of having students actually, like, read, they are being taught how to do well on tests, with the ironic result that they are doing worse on tests. Pretty soon, people will be so brain dead, they will Read more…

Grade inflation (and self-delusion) in America’s high schools

Average grades have increased at America’s high schools every year since 1991 despite the fact that ACT scores have remained flat, reports economist Mark Perry. Maybe this is good. Maybe we will all feel better about ourselves now that we think we are smarter than we really are. Self-esteem, after all, is one of the more important goals of our public education system. The only problem is that it is hard to tell the difference Read more…

Your child left behind: The sorry state of education in the U. S.

Here is the Atlantic magazine, in a new article, “Your Child Left Behind,” on the sorry state of education in the United States: Stanford economist Eric Hanushek and two colleagues recently conducted an experiment to answer just such questions, ranking American states and foreign countries side by side. Like our recruiter, they looked specifically at the best and brightest in each place—the kids most likely to get good jobs in the future—using scores on standardized Read more…

Sleep

One of the charges brought against classic literature by the champions of “YA” (note the jargonistic use of the acronym)–“Young Adult”–books that have been the subject of recent comments on my blog–is that the classics aren’t “relevant.” They don’t “speak” to modern people. I thought about these remarks when I was out in California visiting my ailing father. He was taken to the hospital because he couldn’t sleep. For almost five weeks this went on–he Read more…

Teaching Great Literature vs. Teaching Pop Teen Literature In Schools: Another Indication of What’s Wrong With Education

Well my post in 2009 about a Kentucky school that required a teacher to cut the teen pop literature in a college preparatory course in favor of books that, like, actually belong in a college prep course has apparently made it on some teachers’ loop and I’m getting comments on the post once again, so I thought I’d bring the discussion back out on the current main page. Here is the comment from one teacher Read more…

Don’t Know Much about Education

The chief reason schools are failing is that people don’t know what the problem is. And the reason they don’t know what the problem is is because the educational establishment is telling us that it is something other than what it is. We need more technology; we need more tests; we need to pay teachers more; we need to spend more money on schools; etc., etc., etc. But the chief problem with our schools is Read more…