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The Feds taking over Schools?

Apr 7, 2010|

TNT talk with the Pioneer Institute about the federal takeover of schools

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Years. When we took our. Our trip to Africa and visited his home country in Kenya. -- -- Jealous here -- -- okay. -- -- -- Okay. Yeah how we. Much. But always the chip. I'd like to live. Holds -- -- I am such a DW -- your own. There wipe that smile off your face -- I'll do it for you. That sounds like you does my life deck concourse you know I kind of they do it sets a new. Go ahead make my day. He says stuff like that's virtually every -- Hi yes I do he runs they'll know it yet but. Yeah and we're not not a lot of criminal. Analyze -- you really get. Tyra -- operation that's our -- about because the the federal government is trying to steal away and the rule making for. Education here in the state of Massachusetts and every state in the nation they wanna decide what the curriculum is. They want to essentially dumb down the standards its other stated goal or maybe not even an intention but. It appears to be one of the repercussions if they get away with that with -- in this so. We have a couple of guests in studio from the pioneer institute Charlie chip blue is Syrian gym Sturgis welcome guys did everybody I think you'll -- growth soon god tells what the larger trend is old President Obama one of his best areas as is education is it not because he's fighting. Against the entrenched. Democrat position of a blocking -- -- the increasingly schools and Charter Schools. But this move to try to centralize control -- federal -- is scary isn't it. So it actually have I think especially for stealing Massachusetts what we've done things differently in the right essentially be you look at. Arizona we are support of Charter Schools but look at Arizona has 500 Charter Schools. There votes we know a smidgen better or switch and worse in the district schools -- not get the job done us know what charter should do -- to -- very. Very different approach we said look it's gonna be charters yes it's gonna be really high academic standards to make she'll learn really high quality liberal arts content in the classroom. We're gonna have assessments to make sure that we're holding people accountable. There was an accountability provision to make sure that the districts we're doing stuff that was hard to -- managed themselves well that we won't see things like Lawrence happening which is happening now. Where the school districts in freefall. We did all that -- CC across the board. The white students black students Hispanic students Asians Pacific commons. All shooting upward where the top in the nation we've been top of the nation last three times their -- first time it ever has this. So overall you're talking about we're software your opinion on urban areas can you compare the city of Boston to any other similar sized city and it's doing better. It's doing better than many cities -- not nearly as well as it should do but the basic point cut is look we've done a lot of different things it wasn't just. The silver bullet we never took the silver bullet approach. So in the Obama administration comes then. And they say. Okay we wanna help you promote charters. That's great but when they come in we changed the -- this discussion they say will now we won a mandate. That even though you guys have the highest standards in the nation and you gonna have to take some there's a lot weaker because we want everybody to have it in if you don't take it we might actually pull your title one funding. Or we don't need a title one funding is what it's -- for urban schools essentially. So they use this leverage of I don't make in -- hundreds of millions of dollars plus the money hundreds of millions adults -- Boston Quincy virtually every school system receives title one money. They have become it was all systems do dependent upon that. For better or worse into. To pull the rug out for this one size fits all stand that is what has you that's what hello sales surely takes money and bribes the states to do things it's not about their legal right of the -- program to -- lists they just circumvent the constitution. Take money try to leverage the states to do things the states don't wanna do they give for free money the states or give up a lot as we just saw. So what is the you know just a kind of a side conversation. To this moving this the education standards Washington. They're scary stuff from Washington about what they think education standards should be is then not just that this might dumb us down. But don't they have goofy ideas about standards for education and in Washington well. Yeah I mean did they do I think this is a classic kind of where you stand depends on what you see -- issue. That what they're thinking about is states like Mississippi and that have really low standards and they're thinking about trying to bring those those standards up to the -- they're proposing is certainly better than with those states have. Problem is that it -- Massachusetts or California or -- state that has really high standards. You're really gonna pay a heavy price -- and and I think we're the fundamental problems with the national standards is that they tend to. Focus too much on how to skills and on -- on skills rather -- on underlying academic. -- what is that so they want you to be able to know how to approach problem solving rather than to know. What the US constitution is or what fifty states are what the capitals are those kind of hard skills and we -- it -- school air conditioning coming from a baby boomer you know it to me it's classic baby boomer hubris that it's Woodstock -- yes I did basically it's saying that somehow I like though -- -- at the -- standards. Somehow. Our generation is so unique and the amount of of of information that we have to take in is so unique and it's so different from what any previous generation had to have that we can no longer focus on contact because there's too much contact. What we have to do is is learn how to. That it -- how to learn how to learn and learn how to get stuff. And I think that once you get away from that focus on academic content which is that the basis for. Learning all of these skills and what they call these 21 when his first century skills when another nice raised so phrase that rolls off the -- and again is used to mask an awful lot of thought soft stuff that's right this is like basket weaving his order 21 century skill as well I mean I think they would tell you that it's. Things like cultural competence global awareness it sees what is cultural -- well that's just it you -- you know how to ordered any Indian restaurant look -- when -- yeah yeah you just you could and that the nail on the head what is it exactly I mean we know what history is we know with science -- is what Mathis. You need to learn those things in order to be able to do these higher -- is there an answer that Gemini what is it. You know little Italy cultural competency take a look at that the 21 century skills report that was done here in Massachusetts when. The administration -- was pushing very hard on the and they are still behind the scenes but. One of the things they cited was that students who sit around and make believe that there were a French restaurant and you know they would both serve in order in French. You know that's -- I was just connect nobody in -- restaurant no no no well you'll you'll run of the and you can't -- press yes you can't pick that up on the way and I I go to French restaurants are you taught me want to -- online order aren't ya know mod. Hezbollah stuff okay name -- we do need the story for. To do and Ali want to follow up how is that it look honest I think language are extremely important minutes summit in my life and for my kids we have a lot of but. The fact of the matter is it's not something you can actually mended across the board especially if you're thinking about. Kids who were inner cities -- don't have the basic grasp of the basic concepts and -- gonna take to them or even a French restaurant. Look yeah I would. The it would be gratifying to me if they actually do the multiplication tables basic rules of grammar punctuation spelling I'd be thrilled and I'm not tournament just inner -- kids are taught at Suffolk law school about seven -- is I was a style that not being critical suffered lottery that these are college graduates -- -- lot of comes just how they come to. And I look at that say. You're gonna be a -- UK EE learning and understand the basic rules of punctuation and grammar Heidi if you're diluting the power the power of your argument and yet at the same time Charlie register and an interesting point -- you talk about. The good intentions and maybe -- -- a little too kind of but the good intentions the federal government they look at the Mississippi's in the Alabama since say. We really do need it's in the national interest to bring people up. Why had they recognized that some system states by definition are above the midpoint of the norm. And and a really leading the way and cannot leave us alone or even better yet. Give us an open up the pot so that we can help ourselves to some of the federal money if they're going to be giving it away to encourage people to move forward. Wouldn't we should not have to be suppressed a deep pressed. In order and elevate somebody else's system. Yeah I know that that's socially right you know and it and that was the thing here with that with this recent -- the top. And competition where we were not funded you know lot I don't see you really hit the nail on the head I don't understand why. It's not okay for 25 or thirty states to maybe accept these and improve their standards. But to say that we are standards have to go down in the in the immediate situation here that we have to be denied this race please check and -- a minimum standards right. -- everybody's fine right because we would be testing out of the need for those standards which which you know I rarely put on my legal hat but I you know it it it it's. Common in the law that basically you know federal government sets a minimum standard of floors in the missiles the states have freedom to it. And this is -- score that is not a -- they want you to adopt the national standards not just last year yesterday about the curriculum -- that means the curriculum yet so if they wanna teach basket -- we're teaching history we would be overruled by the feds before we don't have the money if you want the money 85% verbatim word for word you know. And that's the problem that we have -- we have the flexibility for us to experiment beyond we've been good experiment -- wanna continue to spirit we go along -- so this is about taking the death panels from the health care bill and putting them into education these -- hasten death panels they want to take a concept that they found by another I wanna they want ally in the program for death penalty I guess I nameless faceless bureaucrats sitting in some conference Sherman Washington -- -- what the curriculum is gonna. Democrats don't get your -- look at and say. That's dumb that's dumb we already do that much better we have tougher standards we have better books and you say what are we talking with the feds for. And help me with the delegation the congressional delegation now senators Kerry and senator is brown did beef immediately if maybe not as directly as Todd and I might be because you folks a cent regular guests the F. With what's going on positively in Massachusetts education. Vein fighting with you know all of that as a team with you. Against leave the White House in the administration push on these soft so these skills so. Look at the -- they have not engaged in the issue yet and the fact the matters any any change in the what they call you CA or title one funding is gonna require. Come congressional action that's will be a very very tough so I think but the fact of the thinking about it is the problem. They have not engaged yet neither have any of our congressional but the folks on the -- of. While -- in capital Lotto and all those guys given the knowledge based industries we allegedly have O'Connor of the market on this is big pot of our economy. Scott Brown just coming up an interesting election and I'm wanting to citizenship to establish is on identity in -- -- to be finally that's senior senator the kind of the previous leader. But politically that seems to me that should be jumping all over this -- I completely agree but here's -- mean one of the problems we have here is that is that if you take a look at the first phase of priest to the top was asking for states to think about raising the -- caps and charters. Things that we know that work -- now they're asking as part of this application you've got to. Get union buy in for all the reforms you wanna do you have to get this if you can 100% of the the local unions to buy him. You tell me what hard reform has been one. I'm getting that level of -- Ryan Wong you know you guys know having watched Massachusetts that. Superintendents. School committees teachers' unions fought. Tooth and nail there was the resistance to do whether they whether resistance don't know folks like Bulger and clarity and Roosevelt and Birmingham Democrat -- the and -- between you know allies political allies hey. Not on this one boys and girls were not an anonymous runway with twelve -- salute you isn't it very interesting teamwork but you right. It was it's that he's have some pretty vociferous and a persistent resist. Let's say invite some callers to -- give some information and any insights into this were talking about the desire of the Obama administration to control curriculum for every state. To set what the standards are what the details of the regulated -- -- and work. Our state ten to tests better than other states that's potentially. I devaluing of education here and end -- other states that perform above the national average we've Jim surges in studio and Charlie -- -- from the pioneer institute. And we write your call 6172666860. Do you think there's a good idea or should the federal government. Good morning Tom and Todd WR kill me. Wednesday morning needy how many series Thomas Hastings 86 are -- for today and we are already putting on the sidewalk. Smells like coconuts. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Something or herb Albert. I was under her -- to curb and somebody is. You know proxy were you guys don't mind a little diversion Harare education's -- -- hot hot hot hot it is a great -- may have been the -- peaches and -- and are so -- that might have been thinking got a challenge yet while doing all -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- so jewelry -- Woodstock and nobody was naked in the -- had -- life doesn't get any better than this study's data driven curriculum -- -- -- what -- screw bug you that's what good -- -- -- so we're talking education streak and a good drugs and the -- Taiwanese take over curriculum nationally in education standards and also thinking that education standards should be. Goofy kind of drug drug orient to things that are. Puffy and call 21 century skills instead of the old fashioned thing I thought all the problems we have today are because we walked away from our standards. I happen to agree with -- I absolutely have an agreed I think it's an absolute tragedy one huge percentages of American students including. Ivy League students and Ivy League graduates can't identify. The the period of time in which the American civil war what's thought I mean that's that's astounding to me that is utterly astounding know that seems impossible when you mention. But it's that's what's happened I don't know I was in what has happened we're not talking about inner city kids we're talking about the general population walking around in -- days a hissed at the historically illiterate. How the -- -- Heidi how do you. Get the gumption to becomes simply gave her to fight that perhaps -- -- -- country to get her no grass reviewed in the nation's history of adjuster for that because they know how to fix these things doesn't. Earlier generation that know less about history then there then the then their parents there and with all the away and with all the sophisticated tools -- did Brady at their fingertips computers soft we -- -- that is -- problem blah blah blah it's unbelievable can affect his messages was getting it right we're about to implement a US history requirement for graduation. And this administration backed off all of us thought that I went ballistic kind of collect to a three million dollars in luck I know how bad the budget is we all lobby add a -- minimize it at all. Two -- three median dollars to get the framework up and done and now implemented. And -- -- you you would come law I would think that this governor who understands civic immediate engagement who talks about a frequently would understand the direct line. Of relationship between those two but they get this -- I mean there's a huge -- let's be honest about it between the rhetoric that we hear from of the governor and then you know I and then the action we wanted to come on here desperately we don't do -- what are desperately don't well I'd like to have a -- we don't do the kneecap type of talk radio I would never do what I just would not do it. And yet he's a legitimate question to ask how the hell can you back away from that. However let's be fair the governor has learned a fair amount of his own 21 century skills. And that may be part of the issue he might admire them too much let's take some calls on this John you're on WRKO. Good morning. Are you guys film now even big bird knows what's going off. I I I actually don't -- -- yes that's an improvement limit its right. You know effect on guys that we can say I'm crazy but here comes as you said I'm crazy before and I've been proven right -- -- -- but I have called him back and told you I would rather than I was sorry. He wants curriculum in the schools it's no longer going to be body has to -- It's gonna be Bobby has predicted. No room yeah yeah do you think that didn't do a lot of fake fake -- we've already been dictated to have a great. With -- health -- I don't want and it and they get -- into -- -- this is how they do what they're not concerned about teach in American history that concerned about teaching carrying it. All right John thank you for that because you're you're raising an issue I don't know if you guys want to speak to but is there a potential political motivation. That would explain like we understand the political motivation for blocking Charter Schools and teachers unions say Charter Schools. Is -- -- political motivation for. Pushing these 21 century skills instead of having old fashioned curriculum. I think there is I think the political motivation is simply that it's that the -- for century skills don't lend themselves to objective testing which means that the whole accountability piece becomes much more difficult much more more physically going -- which makes. Teachers unions happy because they can then start continue to not be judged based on their performance because there's no way to measure their performance -- these specially if you talk to teachers across the board they still blame and test for coming to on the curriculum affect the matter is. And test is not dumb down the curriculum one iota. Basically says that you have to put an emphasis on English. And math and science and we would've liked to have -- and also include history. It basically does exclude if you will just push out to the margins some things that are not as core to the purpose. That does not come to on the -- and in fact it makes it much much stronger. The teachers like to -- the curriculum in the classroom themselves with nobody watching opened and they -- -- that's what their job is and it's frankly. Not if we want you to we wanna go. Is there an internal battle that Todd measure be aware of within. You know within the profession of teaching in which may be. 20% of the teachers maybe even 30%. I would agree with you would challenge and say you know what this other stuff we would do it was goofy. It be in did it he did not lead to good educational under the semi -- that the thing that's out there which is interesting is that the FT the American Federation of Teachers nationally. Randi Weingarten -- to her folks there are strong supporters of curriculum. They are folks who support ED Hirsch whose work they like to see stronger curriculum in this the schools they wanna make sure that if their teachers are gonna get. Evaluate on the base of student performance that they have a curriculum that we're working from -- actions Eric. We understand forceful should teach they want cause and effect yeah sure so far so if somebody's hit 400 directing NASA says this is -- tremendous that's a legit professional we would like a FT Massachusetts. To work on that agenda with us and to work on that agenda -- -- not to date seen that. So there should be some leverage from the national folks NEA they're all over the 21 century skill stuff there like assessments all the usual stuff so -- there is a split -- Brandywine Garnett they have to even signed that letter. Warning about 21 century skills -- nationally they've been very good. I think I would add to this site do you think that within the profession there's something of a generational split here I think a lot of the younger teachers. Are are kind of chafing at the kind of -- -- you know cold wind up an approach to these things they're using energy they don't like the that the soft skills. Is that what they don't like they don't want the -- that they don't they don't like. They kind of old line sort of industrial revolution union approach to a lot of this stuff there that they're more interested. In perhaps looking it's it beyond just the 21 century skills issue. More open December forms and changing a college podcasts 617266. Exceeds 68 Anthony your next NWR Hewitt Charlie and Jim from the pioneer institute type. I hear the administration. At just how the rest of the world if -- -- a biological or chemical weapons look at it back with jelly being -- Wiki. Okay this guy here what's what's the what's the major going to be it'll Bobby university do you know what -- -- this -- and that every -- government. Just updated eight Bob -- -- broke the schools we bought we can handle our ran. These guys on their boat I. Thank you have an elitist and that is a good guy he's coming to the box when we go when we pin Jason down on that Red Sox game -- that is going to be I just can't penny I I you know I think sums up what most of us feel is that this is tampering with something that's too important in going in the opposite direction the most Americans feel it should be going. Do you sense that from a from what the base for the pioneer institute is US -- think tank you develop. Policy ideas for education and other areas what kind of feedback are you gathering. We're getting feedback that people are very surprised this administration after seeing who has been successful who has not been successful is not drawing empirical lessons -- not saying well. What do Massachusetts do and how we replicate that also it would be very easy for them have started from the perspective of let's look at international benchmarks let's look at Massachusetts California they all -- high standards. Congressman how how can send a copy of for other states bingo our -- when you know -- it is actually pretty obvious when you think of it and it becomes head scratching when people avoid that if we were all. You know worst while baseball plays with -- go to camp -- intake fielding questions from Derek Jeter. What we do it with -- wanted to do his steady got to go take feeling lessons from the -- just made you know for terrorism the American legion and this is -- or find a policy that's gonna diminished Derek Jeter's ability to do what he does so that out so that there's more even this as a result. What do they say in the administration though when you talk to people on the federal Department of Education. What's their response your criticism. They believe that they have to have very clear mandates us to where they wanna go in order to get Sinclair signals to the states we don't think that's the case we think for example there be another approach. Which should be in the floor. Of the curriculum that would be you know a good flow would bring up 25 states but would leave us to be more flexible and to community living in the could continue to continue to learn from us. Or very simple things. The federal government's good is spending money. Have them create incentives for states that improve the fastest on the nation's report card or definitely improve the -- is on the international benchmarks and. Athens that would that would seem to meet captions at the title is great race to the top -- I love the title yup and what you just described would seem to -- you will encompass. The intent behind them the title race for the dot GM -- this country should be striving to get to the top as fast as humanly possible and then to stay at the top. But somehow they think they have the answers mean -- think there is in pockets and the fact of the matter is -- kind of unleash all the different states to experiment and they're not do an act up. During the Barbara -- NW RQ good morning Barbara. I am black I had happened to stay in my car long after ahead of I've got my destination because I had -- -- still -- and they were talking about. The new -- is coming out of college who had taken ineptitude that. The patriots -- certification tests. And apparently came in -- horrible horrible without. I feel like on the map component. 60% failure rate in on their. And affects them -- a foreign defense we'll do is alienate the lousy one about it. Thank you don't bat late can -- any rated PG and they give him the ideal window could come back we pick the -- and I'd like to see. Anyway I'm excited that there's flunk climbed. Any kind of certification date is CPA license. You know you've got to act. In a collective. And that they give you a license to go into that job and come applicant by the Adobe takes. This series and great top can we get -- and you guys -- backed up Barbara topics that are coming out let's -- regularly give -- a quick answer to Barbara's point it's a huge point. Yeah I mean I I I think Barbara has really. Really hit it here I mean I think that we there's a lot of important issues obviously and education. But no variable has more impact then the quality of teachers in terms of us students but is this -- is this something you've heard before we -- I I -- I did a column on front it was a big front page -- story now I actually come on this last year I did some research and I was stunned to find out. That if you look at that. This sort of areas that are related to that people -- go to four year colleges and within the the College Board categories. And -- for people who are going into education. Their scores are test scores -- 37 out of 38. The same was true for people going on to graduate school and education that that the system that we. Half right now does not reward excellence and since it doesn't reward excellence. People who are young and ambitious very often are not. Drawn to it. And many of the teachers that we have today who are good our heroes because they're succeeding beyond that despite this system but we really need to get to a system. That is really drawing -- attracting and rewarding the very -- into right. How would you do that Charlie does a tiny give a lot of thought to these issues this is a huge huge issue. I did you should should -- be a baseline of pay that is very impressive therefore very expensive to taxpayers but at least then you're gonna get the best mathematicians the best. Best right is the best thinkers out that the best students. -- -- -- a couple of things one is that we would probably have to break what is the step. Payment system where people come in low you stay in the system for twenty years he slowly go up and you -- -- serious seniority. -- basically get rid of that it but it's it's basically taking the pension system which is very lucrative if you will. And transferring that into upfront payments in some celery side. Earlier in someone's career -- actually attracting much higher level person early on second thing is the teacher prep programs are. Awful you know what I mean is the teacher prep programs in our schools of education. Math teachers in Massachusetts. Often that's under grads took one. Right 11 core customer in -- there that is unbelievable -- we have some with passion and knowledge you know content knowledge. Look under a system has to be an expert PH you teach math but come on folks we get to play core competency. Yeah yes and I think the passion were also somebody isn't taking it in there under eight years they obviously aren't thrilled about it as a subject Thomas you're next -- WRQ we have Charlie chip -- Jim surges here from pioneer. -- -- -- And there I'm doing very well because if -- well I am. And I just think about just this we. There's connections. Let's just can't refunding and equality of education I think -- know what's her. And really got accepted in the university of page thirteen weeks later there ought to say. And the gospel of Matthew from original languages into English and this system is basically a farm system you know it. The Department of Education should be eliminated as a cabinet position and it should all go back to the state. It really assist the breeding ground in the fashion of leftist and liberal worldview. This bit that we don't refer to public spoke those public schools anymore people awesome home schooling. Segment we call them government schools because that's exactly what they are there. That governs both steps are organized crime but any they're teachers union. It just does not serve the pupil. It doesn't Serb spirits society at large old schoolers score in the 84 percentile compared to the fiftieth percentile in Massachusetts. So then there's the proof that low money and does not affect the outcome. And I found that the parents with higher education decreased to a home schooling let children use -- lower. And Kurtz who has just college diplomas are high school all. Now we are but we're we're -- research -- Almost all legal defense association nature itself BA dot org. All right thank you that's very interesting mature anyway it would kind of feed into this area that the better educated you are the more. Entice you are by puffy Ballmer sort of sensibilities about education should be and you reject the I'd.