Saturday, December 7, 2013

The Worst That Can Happen

Watch this video. Enjoy how it promises to tear apart the process that brought us CCSS.

Now, check the credits at the end and notice who's producing it. The Homeschool Legal Defense Association.

We've parsed out the many groups that have joined the call against CCS in a variety of ways, most commonly noticing that both liberals and conservatives have complaints.

But there's another way to divide up the opponents of current reformy stuff. People who think CCSS threatens public education's most basic character and purpose, and people who think CCSS is the ultimate true expression of public education's most basic character and purpose.

When those folks see this film next February, their first response will be, "I told you so." Their second response will be, "See, EVERYBODY needs to get their kids out of public school." The federal over-reach, the unproven experiments performed on school children, the disenfranchisement of parents, teachers and taxpayers, the treatment of students like wheels on an assembly line-- for them, these are all the things they always knew in their gut were going to happen. Not an aberration, but a confirmation. Not public schools being deformed, but showing their true colors.

Those of us who love and support public education have tended to assume that the worst-case scenario of reform is that Pearson and Gates and the rest will have their way. They will destroy public education and build some sort of two-tiered factory-style soulless shell of a privatized education system in its place.

But that's not the worst case scenario. The worst case scenario is this-- public education is destroyed, and NOTHING is ever built in its place. Parents see what is happening and instead of trying to save the instutution, they flee it. Citizens unable to distinguish between the people who want to save public education and the people who want to "save" public education attack the whole lot of them. The building is razed, leveled, smashed to the ground, and nothing is ever built in its place.

That's the worst that can happen. We need all the allies we can get, but we have to think past the hoped-for death of the current reform wave, because sometimes the enemy of my enemy is, in the end, my enemy, too.

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