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Sat Jul 21, 2012, 06:55 PM

Bill Gates key education "reform" is toxic in his own company

It would be nice if politicians would listen to educators when it comes to education reform, but these days, expertise is determined solely by how big a campaign donation check you can write.

In this case, the victims of Washington's profound corruption isn't just good policy, but our kids and their teachers.

Until now, in this expose by Vanity Fair addressing the key practices at the foundation of Microsoft’s failures (“Today, a single Apple product—the iPhone—generates more revenue than all of Microsoft’s wares combined”).

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In effect, Gates’s plan to address teacher quality is shared among almost all education reformers, including the USDOE and Secretary Arne Duncan, and focuses on labeling,ranking, and sorting teachers—a practice eerily similar to the “Cannibalistic Culture” identified as central to the failures at Microsoft:

“Eichenwald’s conversations reveal that a management system known as ‘stack ranking’—a program that forces every unit to declare a certain percentage of employees as top performers, good performers, average, and poor—effectively crippled Microsoft’s ability to innovate. ‘Every current and former Microsoft employee I interviewed—every one—cited stack ranking as the most destructive process inside of Microsoft, something that drove out untold numbers of employees,’ Eichenwald writes. ‘If you were on a team of 10 people, you walked in the first day knowing that, no matter how good everyone was, 2 people were going to get a great review, 7 were going to get mediocre reviews, and 1 was going to get a terrible review,’ says a former software developer. ‘It leads to employees focusing on competing with each other rather than competing with other companies.’”


http://www.dailycensored.com/2012/07/08/gatess-cannibalistic-culture-coming-to-a-school-near-you/

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sat Jul 21, 2012, 09:27 PM

1. Ironically, the one guy in the corporate world who understood how

to get the best out of people is being ignored by the education "reformers" W. Edwards Deming. His work in Japan is why they wiped the floor with our asses in car quality for a couple of decades.

I've known people who worked in factories run on his principles in America, and they took great pride in the work, product, and company because they had input in what and how things were done.

Nothing could be further from what education reformers are forcing on teachers with top down curriculum, endless repetitive testing, then using that testing as a stick to beat teachers with.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #1)

Sun Jul 22, 2012, 08:21 PM

7. When I was teaching on the college level, one of the best ways to work with problematic students

was to consult with their other professors and find out if and how the other professors were able to motivate them, get through to them, or squelch problematic behavior.

I also learned a lot from other professors and K-12 teachers over lunch at our annual state foreign language teachers' convention.

If I were designing state curriculum standards, I'd put them in terms something like this:

"In this grade, social studies will focus on the history and geography of the state (let's say Minnesota), starting with the Native peoples and working down to the present day. Topics will include the natural features of the state, including geological features and native plants and animals; the lives and cultures of the Ojibwe and Lakota peoples before the arrival of the European settlers, the early explorers, eastern Minnesota as part of the Northwest Territories, the Louisiana Purchase, the first settlers from New England...(and so). Join with other teachers who teach the same grade in your school or nearby to devise lesson plans that fit your teaching style and the learning styles of your students."

Each grade and subject would have similar requirements: topics to be covered and instructions to the teachers to cover them as they thought best.

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Response to Lydia Leftcoast (Reply #7)

Mon Jul 23, 2012, 04:51 AM

8. That's more or less how college works (for now) and how

K-12 should work.

That's certainly how it works in private schools.

I opted out of teaching K-12 because even in the late 80s, legislatures were already micromanaging curriculum to the point of scripted lessons.

That reduces teachers to little more than the equivalent of tour guides reciting a canned speech.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #1)

Tue Jul 24, 2012, 10:27 AM

14. And this "No Contest: The Case Against Competition"


Alfie Kohn's book "No Contest: The Case Against Competition" is eye-opening.

It had a profound effect on me and my management style.

See this short article aith key points:
http://www.angelfire.com/or/sociologyshop/myths.html



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Response to SharonAnn (Reply #14)

Tue Jul 24, 2012, 01:21 PM

16. My wife and a friend who's a counselor swear by his stuff.

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sat Jul 21, 2012, 09:28 PM

2. good read indeed

FYI I attended a meeting and this stack ranking is coming to physicians near you

who is driving it? Insurance companies via payout rates and bonuses

Performance pay for independent doctors now and a narrowing of networks offered to employers who offer insurance benefits and contract with the insurance companies of which there already has been a narrowing of choices in the insurance industry itself (used to be about 30 different companies or more)
Don't play? Then very low payout and eventually removed from in network

from the article
The balance of evidence shows that measurable student outcomes (itself a serious flaw in how we draw conclusions about both student learning and teacher quality) is overwhelmingly linked with out-of-school factors—anywhere from about 2/3 to well over 80% of that data correlated with out-of-school factors.
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health outcomes likewise can be linked to factors out of medical control( lifestyle choices /predisposed etc.) but if your pt winds up in the hospital the doctor takes a hit on performance so like charter schools getting picky about which students to keep so they look good....well you see where it could go in medical care

anyway re: Bill Gates =he has sucked for a long time and big time for a myriad of actions

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Response to lunasun (Reply #2)

Sun Jul 22, 2012, 07:59 PM

5. that's depressing to hear it's coming to health care

since the insurance companies measure for success has little to do with patients' well-being.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #5)

Sun Jul 22, 2012, 08:09 PM

6. Ha! It's already come to health care!

My brother was forced out of a group orthopedics practice, not because he was ineffective--he was TOO effective and didn't meet his quota of patients to refer for surgery. He was too good at finding non-surgical, non-pharmaceutical cures for many of his patients' ailments.

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Response to Lydia Leftcoast (Reply #6)

Mon Jul 23, 2012, 04:59 PM

12. meeting was hitting lowly independent doctors now who participate in networks

but you are correct many big group practices are already doing this internally=
looking at the health of the practice more than the well being of the patient if they want more profit as goal

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sun Jul 22, 2012, 09:26 AM

3. It's a very stupid policy if you really want good teachers.

But then Gates was never really smart so much as clever at marketing and very, very greedy.

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Response to bemildred (Reply #3)

Sun Jul 22, 2012, 12:40 PM

4. He was clever in the way John D. Rockefeller was...

figuring out how to gain monopoly power regardless of the quality of his products.

I always liked Microsoft Word, but Windows has all the elegance and user friendliness of Soviet Trabant and the reliability of a North Korean ICBM.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #4)

Mon Jul 23, 2012, 12:15 PM

9. Really intelligent people have better things to do than collect money and power.

Not that a sufficient supply of money or power is a bad thing, but it gets boring fast if that's all you have to occupy yourself with.

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Response to bemildred (Reply #9)

Mon Jul 23, 2012, 12:31 PM

10. I sincerely think that most of the greatest innovators in business...

are motivated by love of their work, or an itch to make the better mousetrap and the financial rewards are a consequence or at best a secondary goal.

That is certainly true of 99% of teachers. If someone goes into that field for the money, they will be sorely disappointed in the effort to reward ratio.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #10)

Mon Jul 23, 2012, 12:36 PM

11. Yes.

Like I said, the best have better things to do.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #10)

Tue Jul 24, 2012, 08:19 AM

13. I did it for the money

said no teacher, ever.

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Response to JNelson6563 (Reply #13)

Tue Jul 24, 2012, 01:20 PM

15. definitely.

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