Child abuse under color of education reform

Assisted Suicide of a Generation

Five KIPP schools in the San Francisco Bay had an attrition rate of 60% between 5th and 8th grade, giving ammunition to KIPP’s detractors. Conversely, if teachers would reinvent high school during their spare time, then we could re-engage alienated teens. And so goes the blame game.

So, why not focus on highly mobile and excessively absent students? After all, there must be a rational limit to the scorn we can heap on educators for their inability to help children who are not in school. It is manifestly impossible for teachers, who already have their hands full, to reach out and rescue many of those children who miss school too much. New York City has 392 people to monitor 200,000 students who are chronically absent, but the district adopted the predictable response – blame the principals.

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1 Response to “Child abuse under color of education reform”


  1. 1 JesseAlred April 18, 2009 at 8:09 am

    Wendy Kopp–like her friends, our nation’s corporate leaders–preaches but does not practice accountability when she claims Teach For America and its branches, the KIPP and YES charter schools, have done jack to close the achievement gap.

    Education professors argue whether 40% or 20% of TFA teachers remain in school past the requisite two-year stint, but neither advocates or enemies of TFA have presented ANY evidence of them improving the academic results of significant numbers of working-class, minority students.

    The only argument they have comes from the outstanding perfomance of kids at KIPP and YES, and these students attend charter schools after their families have applied to schools with longer school days, extended school years, and loads of homework.

    Teach For America provides a positive service, and its charter schools provide a top-quality education for kids whose ambitious familes are already committed to education.

    The notion that these folks are the solution not only to school reform but to social reform also must derive from an equal mixture of egotism, careerism, the rich-person’s sense of entitlement, stupidity and the desire to please government-hating corporate donors.


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