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Sun Dec 9, 2012, 03:07 PM

PROJECT CENSORED: Education “Reform” a Trojan Horse for Privatization

The title sums it up perfectly: education "reform" isn't about reform at all, but diverting tax dollars away from the classroom and into the pockets of hedge fund managers and the other scammers who broke our and the world economy.

Wouldn't it be nice if our Democratic president we just re-elected dropped these conservative, profoundly corrupt and destructive policies?

Public education is the target of a well-coordinated, well-funded campaign to privatize as many schools as possible, particularly in cities. This campaign claims it wants great teachers in every classroom, but its rhetoric demoralizes teachers, reduces the status of the education profession, and champions standardized tests that perpetuate social inequality. The driving logic for such reform is profits.

Censored News Cluster: From “Bankster Bailout” to “Blessed Unrest”: News We Can Use to Create a US Economy for the 99 Percent

Paul Rosenberg, “Education ‘Reform’ Vs. the 99%,” Random Lengths News, February 10–23, 2012, http://www.randomlengthsnews.com/images/IssuePDFs/2012-feb/rl_02-09-12.pdf.

Paul Thomas, “Testing and Poverty in Education,” TheDaily Censored (blog), August 8, 2011, http://www.dailycensored.com/2011/08/08/poverty-and-testing-in-education-the-present-scientifico-legal-complex.

http://www.mediafreedominternational.org/2012/04/13/education-reform-a-trojan-horse-for-privatization/

http://www.mediafreedominternational.org/2011/11/07/testing-continues-poverty-and-limited-education/

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 03:16 PM

1. So if the word "reform" is invariably evil in this context, what words will be OK to use?

When discussing changes, improvements, and wholesale reconfiguring of school systems, classrooms, districts, etc., such that they can serve their clients (students) most effectively, I'll be sure not to use the word, "reform".

It's kind of a loaded term anyway when you think about it.

Criminals and drug addicts "reform", and schools are neither.

Still, I hate when we give words too much power.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 04:30 PM

2. they did their linguistic homework, as the right always does before they sell us a hatful of shit

Last edited Sun Dec 9, 2012, 05:33 PM - Edit history (1)

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Response to yurbud (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 05:08 PM

4. they tend to misappropriate terminology... like what it means to be "patriotic".

Or what freedom means, they fuck with the meanings of words.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #4)

Mon Dec 10, 2012, 03:29 PM

5. Yes, the RWers are the ones who misappropriated that word....

Same as TORT reform.

We didn't do it.

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Response to NYC_SKP (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 9, 2012, 04:30 PM

3. I would put "corporate" in front of "reform" and something else in front of other kinds

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Response to yurbud (Original post)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 09:25 AM

6. It's not public education if it's not public.

And if it's not public education, taking all comers, it should not get public money. You want private access, private school, you pay with your private money.

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Response to bemildred (Reply #6)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 01:32 PM

7. Charter schools fall into that category

Since they don't have to follow the same rules as true public schools, not to mention having no elected board and don't have to reveal to the public how they spend the money they receive from taxpayers, they aren't public schools at all. They are private schools set up to take taxpayer money. The "reformers" no longer peddle the fiction these schools are "public schools" because they aren't.

It matters not whether corporations own them or they are "non-profit." The vast majority of private schools are non-profit, including religious schools. Charters are de facto private schools, promoted by the likes of the far-right Bradley Foundation when vouchers proved unpopular with the public.

Every child has the right to a free public education in the neighborhoods in which they live. Charter schools are not public schools, period. They have no right to get taxpayer money.

If any are truly good, let them operate without taxpayer money and charge tuition.

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Response to duffyduff (Reply #7)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 02:07 PM

9. aren't most pure private schools non-profits?

I know in higher ed, we don't really even think of "private" and "for profit" as the same thing.

One means not government run and the other means a scam.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #9)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 03:09 PM

10. True

However, charter school people love to paint their "schools" as "public" when in fact they are not by any objective standard.

They are designed to skim taxpayer money and scam taxpayers in the process.

Charter schools aren't run by the government; they are privately managed, which is the very essence of a private school. They simply don't charge tuition.

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Response to bemildred (Reply #6)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 02:04 PM

8. I like that formulation except I went to a purely public magnet school that DIDN'T take all comers

We had other magnet schools in Portland, but they were a mix of application students and those who lived in the neighborhood. Mine was the only purely application one, which gave administrators a powerful disciplinary tool: they could simply threaten to send us back to our neighborhood school. That one thing along with the extra effort it took parents and students to get in was enough make a much safer school environment, where I saw one and a half fights in four years, and never heard of any drug dealing let alone gangs.

Apart from the teachers of some specialized classes, the rest didn't have any special qualifications and were rotated in from and out to other public schools.

Apart from the micromanagement and underfunding of public schools, dealing with discipline and violence is the biggest challenge, and partly why private and charters would appear (but only appear) to do better.



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Response to yurbud (Reply #8)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 03:10 PM

11. As long as these "schools" can admit whoever they want

of course they will do "better" than traditional public schools.

Remove the special education and ESL students, and there is little difference in quality between true public schools and private schools.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #8)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 03:39 PM

12. Discipline is the other big problem.

And that problem comes from the compulsory nature of education as we do it now. Education should be voluntary, and there should always be other activities (jobs, vocational training, NGO and public works volunteerism, etc.) for those not ready or willing for some academic course of study. People cannot be forced to become academically educated, and it is folly to try.

Schools ought not resemble prisons, in other words, lest the students think of them that way.

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Response to bemildred (Reply #12)

Tue Dec 11, 2012, 05:39 PM

13. the hard part is we have a critical period for learning a lot and some kids might miss it

if they opt to go straight to McDonald's.

And there would be a lot of pressure keeping them at those other alternatives too.

I don't want school to be like prison either, but if we let the apathetic and violent go their own way, the rest of our society will be more like prison.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #13)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 10:41 AM

14. That's why you have better alternatives for those not ready for academic work.

You know, stuff they might actually want to do, that's useful, pays a stipend, and teaches them something.

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