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Barack Obama: The "Acme Corporation" Of Education Reform

Today, the Boston Globe has an editorial lauding Barack Obama's latest statement on education reform. They praise him for daring to challenge the teacher's unions and championing programs such as charter schools.

OK, let's be honest. That's not so much as "challenging" the unions. It's more sticking one toe across their party line.

The problem I have here is that we've already seen Obama's attempts at education reform. For seven years, he sat on the board of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge (four as its head) and oversaw the spending of over $100 million on improving the city's schools -- and, in the end, achieved nothing:

This study examined whether the Chicago Annenberg Challenge promoted improvement in schools it supported and in student achievement and other outcomes; factors that might explain improvement or lack thereof among Annenberg schools; and what could be learned from the Challenge's experiences. It highlighted the period between 1996-1997 through 2000-2001. Results suggest that among the schools it supported, the Challenge had little impact on school improvement and student outcomes, with no statistically significant differences between Annenberg and non-Annenberg schools in rates of achievement gain, classroom behavior, student self-efficacy, and social competence.

In other words, he was an utter failure at reforming Chicago's schools. So let's have him try to clean up the nation's schools!

Why? Because we Hope he's Changed.


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Comments (21)

What's better? Sarah Palin'... (Below threshold)

What's better? Sarah Palin's ideas for education? She wants to teach unscientific religious beliefs that the world was created only 6,000 years ago and man and dinosaurs coexisted, despite all scientific evidence to the contrary. Or Abstinence education in schools. Hey, that worked out real well for her unwed teen daughter.

But seriously, many factors need to be considered when evaluating Chicago schools. It's difficult for children to study if they live in a dangerous welfare housing project with drug dealing, gang activity, shootings, etc. The social environment needs to be stable enough for a child to spend a few hours each night on homework and study. And dead bodies dropping on the ground from gang related gunfire incidents is indeed a major academic distraction.

Paul, to steal a line from ... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

Paul, to steal a line from "Streets of Fire" (one of my favorite movies). Gee you're dumb. And you're short. Really short.

Oh and Jay... Why? Because we Hope he's Changed.

I'm stealing that line. You've been warned. ;)

Exsubnuke, one book publish... (Below threshold)

Exsubnuke, one book published by Frederick Thrasher by the University of Chicago found no less 1,313 gangs functioning in Chicago. Any programs to improve education are largely aimed at improving conditions among those in poverty or minority communities, but community livability issues compete with a decent environment to study.

I don't doubt that Obama's plan to improve education likely fell short because of stronger community livability issues that need to be first addressed.

If many families can afford it, private education is a better alternate than some troubled local public schools.

Hooson, Palin has been gove... (Below threshold)

Hooson, Palin has been governor of Alaska for two years, and spent several years as mayor of Wasilla. You got ANYTHING to back up your bullshit about her pushing creationism on schools, or crocks about dinosaurs, or ANYTHING, or are you -- as usual -- just pulling stuff out of your ass?

Here, let me peek at your crib notes: once, when asked, Palin said that she thought creationism should be taught alongside evolution. But there is not ONE SHRED of evidence that she EVER tried to put that thought to action.

This is where most people would then dig up some link that tries to prove their point. But Mr. Hooson is apparently allergic to citing sources, so that's not very likely.

J.

hooson - "What's better... (Below threshold)
marc:

hooson - "What's better? Sarah Palin's ideas for education? She wants to teach unscientific religious beliefs that the world was created only 6,000 years ago and man and dinosaurs coexisted, despite all scientific evidence to the contrary. Or Abstinence education in schools. Hey, that worked out real well for her unwed teen daughter."

PH, you've stooped to a new level of stupidity.

But, to be honest, at least we know your email client is up to snuff and operating with full efficiency. But I have to ask, have you set-up a special folder for viral emails?

ph... REALITY BITES.

What's next, will you invoke the "Matt Damon defense?"

ph, you're an utter and complete moron.

Holy crap!!! Paul, your se... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

Holy crap!!! Paul, your second post was far more lucid and topical as well as more founded in truth than your first. Why not post more like that 2nd one?

NOW we can have a vigorous and honest debate of ideas, as opposed to easily dismissing incoherent false rantings, as exampled by your first post.

...despite all scientifi... (Below threshold)
res:

...despite all scientific evidence to the contrary...

I guess that all depends on what your definition of "science" is. Your comment smacks more of 'dogma' than of 'scientific method,' which, BTW, when applied to the available evidence by real degreed scientists, fits the Genesis record quite well.

If science is about observation and debate, why are so many liberals (and an alarming number of conservatives) so anxious to squelch discussion on the topic of origins? All Palin has said is that she supports discussion of alternate views on origins... not that she would require it to be the only thing rammed down the throats of grade-schoolers (as is currently being done with evolution).

And another thing ph, you'r... (Below threshold)
marc:

And another thing ph, you're not "stuck on stupid," that implies you got there from somewhere else.

There's every reason to believe it's a life-long affliction. Or to put it another way, "it's the DNA stupid!"

Jay Tea, as usual, misses t... (Below threshold)

Jay Tea, as usual, misses the liberal view of education. Obama helped Ayers spend an extra 100 million dollars in schools. That's it, that's success. Stop trying to read beyond that ;)

NO testing. NO teacher accountability. NO student accountability. MORE money was spent. THAT is the definition of success for public education. Getting a town or city to raise spending by 5%. THAT is success. 5% over inflation is GREAT success. 5% over inflation is showing that we REALLY care about our children. And, no, it does not matter what, if any, gains are produced by that extra dough. THAT is not what is important. It doesn't matter if our children is learning, all that is important is whether we are putting food on our teachers' unions' families. So to speak.

Oh, and Paul, I don't doubt... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

Oh, and Paul, I don't doubt the findings you noted. My sister actually taught music in a north Chicago suburb for a few years in the late 90s. She often commented on the bad social conditions and the gangs.

And to be perfectly honest about a more overarching issue of politics in general, I agree with what Karl Rove said the other day. BOTH SIDES try to make points in their ads, and BOTH SIDES take at leat 1 step too far. It's one of the reasons I have a distinct distaste for politics, as it's reduced to caricature more often than not. I honestly believe that to be the case with the "lipstick on a pig" issue. I also believe that to be the case with the "teaching sex ed to kindergardeners (and I've already read the pertinent info by York). The truth is somewhere in the middle of where Obama and McCain asserted it to be, and in their assertions, it becomes laughable in the blatant political posturing.

That's one reason I really like Palin. She, FOR ONCE, really seems to be exactly what she puts out for everyone to see her to be.

Anyway, I apologize for the off topic rantings... but I had to give some kudos to Paul for a single honest, lucid and truthful argument.

hmmm, Bristol Palin attends... (Below threshold)
Chip:

hmmm, Bristol Palin attends a public school. Do our public schools teach abstinence ONLY? Or do they teach other forms of sex education?

Hooson, you're talking out your nether region.

Palin only supports abstinence to be taught in sex-ed!"

This claim is usually followed by a super classy comment about her daughter and the use of contraception, but the premise is false. Palin hasn't said she doesn't want condoms discussed in sex-ed, calling their discussion "relatively benign."

"I'm pro-contraception, and I think kids who may not hear about it at home should hear about it in other avenues. So I am not anti-contraception. But, yeah, abstinence is another alternative that should be discussed with kids. I don't have a problem with that," Palin said. Hers is hardly an extreme point of view in America today.

Considering Obama's history... (Below threshold)

Considering Obama's history with 'educational programs' I'm certain he would appoint Bill Ayers as his Sec. Education.

The two of them would do exactly as Obama has run the Annenberg Challenge and his own campaign - throw vasts sums of money, pad the pockets of cronies, and ultimately result in negative outcomes.

... because we all know it isn't what a democrat actually achieves, it is all about that he tries....

that's why his 'campaign' counts as experience.

Fine. Let's use it as a template on how he would run government programs, such as education. Lots of dollars and zero accountability.

Yep. Obama "challenged" the... (Below threshold)

Yep. Obama "challenged" the Chicago Teachers Union in 2003 too. So much so that he had a hand in legislation that FORCED the Chicago Board of Education to partner with the Chicago Teachers Union. All in the name of "education reform".

It's another case of, Here's what I promise to do. Never mind that I have a track record of doing just the opposite.

Just for kicks. An... (Below threshold)
Rich:

Just for kicks.

Anchorage has about 30 gangs running around. Having worked in hospitals there for awhile I have seen plenty of them come in full of holes from guns and knives.

rich - "Just for kicks.... (Below threshold)
marc:

rich - "Just for kicks."

Ok, you had your fun, now move on.

Yeah, I vaguely recall my s... (Below threshold)
ExSubNuke:

Yeah, I vaguely recall my sister telling me about how you could tell the difference between the different gang uniforms. The one that stuck with me is the one for the Maniac Disciples. Purple was their color, and they'd wear sweat pants with one leg hiked up to their knee. She taught elementary school music and this was a problem even at that level.

How sad is that?

Anchorage has abou... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:
Anchorage has about 30 gangs running around.

Just for even more kicks. Those must be the attys Obama dropped in to scope for dirt on Palin. Okay, now I've had my fun, too. :)

lol, Medusa!... (Below threshold)

lol, Medusa!

but, but, but...Di... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:

but, but, but...

Didn't Obama organize those communities???

How could they still have gangs???

Did Obama organize the gangs to make them more effective?

hmmmmm........ (Below threshold)
Larry:


hmmmmm.....

Well, I do find it interesting that Chicago Elementary teachers work a 5 hour and 15 minute day. As in all things, Uh-bama says one thing and does another. I would post this stuff on Blue, but Lee got tired of me exposing his half truths with more facts and kicked me off.

I do note that Jay is much more receptive to dissent than Ward.

Paul:You said:... (Below threshold)
Larry:

Paul:

You said:

What's better? Sarah Palin's ideas for education? She wants to teach unscientific religious beliefs that the world was created only 6,000 years ago and man and dinosaurs coexisted, despite all scientific evidence to the contrary. Or Abstinence education in schools. Hey, that worked out real well for her unwed teen daughter.

I recognise that you are normally an inhabitant of Blue, which means that solid research and the facts are secondary to your worldview. I must say that comment is so far from the facts as to even top some of the ludicrous posts by Lee Ward.

The reason is simple. Do you know to which version of creationism Palin subscribes? For example, I subscribe to something called "Evolutionary Creationism," or theistic evolution, There are at least a dozen variants to creationism including the one you are probably mindlessly thinking of since you didn't bother to do your research.

Hey Paul, my granny taught me to know my facts before I opened my mouth. She said I could keep quite and people might think me a fool, but if I didn't know what I was talking about, I could say something and then there would be no doubt. Get it?

Hey, how about the shout out tonight WGN-AM?
Wonder if the ACLU will have anything to say about it? Naw, that would require a belief in the Constitution. What's your view on free speech if the speaker doesn't agree with Obama, Paul? roflmao




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