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05 December 2019


T'sing Hauw

Not PRC or China, but RED China. Boy aren't you still stuck in the sixties!!

Don Bessee

So emperor Xi is not the dictator of communist china aka red china aka chi coms? All still valid descriptions @ 601.

Sounds like a Bloomberg fan who does not pay attention to what the Chinese communist party says and does and doesn't do. LOL

Xi "we will not militarize our man made islands"


Bill Tozer

Dougski @ 6:01 pm.

Aha, I see your are using the ole Punchy tactic to take one word to avoid the entire topic at hand and DIVERT the topic of which your personally have blood on your hands and would rather not discuss.

Ok, let’s look at the topic. American schools rank at the ‘bottom of the barrel’ among developed nations. Of that scandalous national embarrassment, CA schools (in English and Math proficiency) rank in the bottom 10% of this nation’s vomit inducing standing. Basement of the outhouse, if you prefer. Hall of Shame. Of that pitiful situation, Nevada County schools rank in middle of the lowest 10% of in the nation which happens to be in the basement of the “Outhouse of the Developed World.”

It always cracks me up when someone writes in The Union promoting our wonderful area and our “good schools.” ROFLMAO. Heck, we are not even close to being the shiniest turd in the bottom of the barrel scrapings.

Guess pointing a finger at the Leftinistas that have controlled education for half a century here in the the USA is a big taboo. Must not go there, will not go there. Let’s pick up on “Red China”. Speaking of the sixties, our education system was at the top...until you and your like minded excuses for ‘educators’ got your fingers on it. You should be flogged and put in the stocks in the public square.

Face plant.

Bill Tozer

More of the same

“Despite Common Core Promises, U.S. Kids Repeat Poor Performance On Latest Global Test
On Tuesday, the latest results from a respected international test showed U.S. students making no progress in math or reading in the past 19 years. It's the latest puncture in Common Core's inflated promises.”....

“The U.S. ranking improved in all three subjects to eighth in reading, 30th in math and 11th in science, when compared with 63 other educational systems that reported data in 2015 and 2018. But Ms. [Peggy] Carr[, a U.S. federal education official,] said the improved rankings are due to score changes with other education systems,” reported WSJ.

The less atrocious reading scores are thus not much cause for celebration. And the kids at the bottom were, as always, hit hardest. According to The New York Times, “About a fifth of American 15-year-olds scored so low on the PISA test that it appeared they had not mastered reading skills expected of a 10-year-old, according to Andreas Schleicher, director of education and skills at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which administers the exam. Those students, he said, face ‘pretty grim prospects’ on the job market.”


Bill Tozer

Walter E. Williams: Fraud in Higher Education

“According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2016, only 37% of white high school graduates tested as college-ready, but colleges admitted 70% of them. Roughly 17% of black high school graduates tested as college-ready, but colleges admitted 58% of them. A 2018 Hechinger Report found, “More than four in 10 college students end up in developmental math and English classes at an annual cost of approximately $7 billion, and many of them have a worse chance of eventually graduating than if they went straight into college-level classes.”

“The falling standards witnessed at our primary and secondary levels are becoming increasingly the case at tertiary levels. “Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses” is a study conducted by Professors Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa. They found that 45% of 2,300 students at 24 colleges showed no significant improvement in “critical thinking, complex reasoning and writing by the end of their sophomore years.”

“An article in News Forum for Lawyers titled “Study Finds College Students Remarkably Incompetent” cites a study done by the American Institutes for Research that revealed that over 75% of two-year college students and 50% of four-year college students were incapable of completing everyday tasks. About 20% of four-year college students demonstrated only basic mathematical ability, while a steeper 30% of two-year college students could not progress past elementary arithmetic. NBC News reported that Fortune 500 companies spend about $3 billion annually to train employees in “basic English.”

Bill Tozer

Perhaps instead of plowing headfirst into the Brave New World of public education with new ideas, theories,and classroom techniques, we should look to the past to see what actually worked.
When Disruptive Students Are Coddled, the Whole Class Suffers

“Teachers report feeling powerless to enforce order and ensure the safety of their students. But their voices are ignored, in part because the same ideology that undergirds these policies also serves to heap the blame for student misbehavior on educators. Statistical disparities in student discipline are taken as a prima facie indicator of institutional racism or ableism. And to the extent that student misbehavior is seen as being a product of trauma, anyone who applies disciplinary measures to the student is accused of exacerbating that trauma......

“By the time Donald Trump took office, it had become clear that the Department of Education’s concerns were unfounded: Researchers had determined that after controlling for misbehavior, students with disabilities were no more or less likely to be disciplined than their general-education peers. What’s more, minority students were actually substantially under-represented in special education compared to similarly situated white students. So the primary effects of “Equity in IDEA” will be to deny minority students special-education services, pressure schools to keep EBD students in traditional classrooms, and inhibit teachers from disciplining them. (The Trump administration temporarily delayed implementation pending review, but the delay got struck down by a court challenge, and the Trump administration recently dropped its appeal.)

“With Washington holding the purse strings and pushing these misguided policies on local school districts, parents’ and teachers’ complaints to school-board members seem likely to fall on deaf ears. Parents with the financial means to pay for private education will increasingly evacuate their students from public schools altogether. Meanwhile, less advantaged students, like their teachers, will have no choice but to continue their education in an environment where a single agitated student has the power to seize control of any classroom he pleases.”



re: BillT@1:40AM

Good article. I do think that it's worth considering that it's not purely an issue in education but something deeper.

There's just too many analogs in Blue Mob America similar to the situation in schools. A push to move control of anti-social behavior from culture/tradition to government with an associated push by government to decriminalize that same behavior.

There's a strong juju at work that causes governments to invent needle distribution programs, decriminalize small burglaries and other crimes, embrace permanent public camping, and rejoice in street pooping. It's the death of a million cuts in civil society mostly at the cost of the Deplorables. That frequent flyer crazy homeless guy is your hometown's version of the bad kid in class.


I think it wrong to mistake what has gone wrong with K-12 education in the US for a leftist cabal taking it over. Yes, it aligns with the Left but it's just scavenging.

Modern neighborhood schools are siphons for money and credentialing, meant to insure minimum competence, has instead insured the schools to be temples of mediocrity. Exit the Headmaster, representing academic competence. Enter the trained principal, more of a cat-herder than a fount of high standards.

There is no value to principals in having a smart and competent teacher corps in a school, in a district. They're pains in the arses to manage. Especially to the average principal and superintendent, not to mention an elected school board who are lost souls who are there because they won a local popularity contest, not because they have a clue.

A century ago, the father of the Wright Brothers was upset his grandkids were being taught to guess at the words they were trying to read. This conflict isn't new.

My own suggestion for school reform won't ever happen. Virtually every teacher, every administrator, has gone to college and has taken a college entrance exam. Therefore, every school could be assigned a number for the average SAT/ACT score of the instructional and administrative staff.

Make it public. No, it isn't a be-all and end-all. Just an indication.

George Rebane

A measure of the effectiveness of a theory is not only its ability to understand the past, explain the current, but also its ability to predict the future - here, we consider policies in effect, those now being forged, and also planned for introduction and later implementation.

Bill Tozer

I saw a fairly recent article with the header going something like this; “Democrats destroying schools, Republicans don’t have a clue or offer solutions.” Something like that. Can’t find it, so here goes with substitutes. Pun not intended. Or as Dr. Rebane concluded his post, “ Once more we turn to Thomas Jefferson – ‘A nation ignorant and free, that never was and never shall be.’ The Democrats live by it, and the Republicans don’t have a clue.”

“This means that, for better or worse, educational improvement is always a political project. The failure to improve schooling is thus, in part, inevitably a political failure. After all, improving schools nationwide requires enacting reforms across an array of contexts, and then executing, supporting, and sustaining those reforms in a patchwork of red and blue communities. This Tocquevillian challenge can be answered only with a broad, bipartisan coalition. We suspect that the dismal results recorded by the NAEP are partially due to a once-bipartisan school-reform community’s hard turn to the left.

“Today, education-reform organizations and the foundations that fund them are overwhelmingly populated by Democrats. Earlier this year, we analyzed the campaign contributions of the employees at a wide swath of education-reform organizations, including Teach For America and major charter-school operators. More than 90 percent of the thousands of contributions we studied, made over many years, flowed to Democrats. It appears that school reformers today are more uniformly partisan than even the National Education Association, the largest teachers’ union — indeed, the largest union of any kind — in the United States.

“This is a massive change from what the reform community looked like 20 years ago. Back in 2000, for instance, political-campaign contributions by employees at a similar sample of organizations were closer to evenly split between Democratic and Republican candidates. It’s hard to pin down precisely what changed — though it’s fair to say that it’s partly a tale of Republicans walking away from school reform and partly one of an emboldened Left driving Republicans out of the movement by prioritizing identity politics and heavy regulation.

Good article. Could copy and paste the whole thing. Random paragraphs.


“Third, I honestly don't think most people in education have any clue just how ideologically loaded their day-to-day assumptions and discussions are. For instance, the word "equity" has become the organizing principle of K-12 school improvement. There are whole media outlets (such as Chalkbeat) that proclaim that their mission is to report on educational equity. And, of course, equity is a good and important value. It's why many on the left get out of bed each morning. But it also turns out that there are other virtues—like liberty, personal responsibility, and community—that not infrequently come into conflict with equity. (That's the nature of the whole "liberty v. equality" tension in free societies—one that is recognized as inevitable by pretty much every political philosophy other than socialism.) If you think it sounds radical and weird to suggest that any tension exists or that some serious people might value liberty more highly than equity, just shoot me an e-mail—there are some books and documents you may want to catch up on. It's not that conservatives are uninterested in equity; it's just that, in the structure of conservative values and thought, notions of liberty, responsibility, and community tend to rank higher.“

Fourth, one of the reasons that right-left differences get ignored is that people in and around education think they have the whole spectrum covered: there is, after all, the fierce conflict between the "reform" camp and the union-establishment. What usually gets missed, however, is that for the past decade, this clash has primarily existed between two wings of the Democratic Party. The "reformers" have mostly been passionate, Great Society liberals who believe in closing "achievement gaps" and pursuing "equity" via charter schooling, teacher evaluation, the Common Core, and test-based accountability. And their opponents have been the Democratic Party's more traditional, New Deal wing. Other than occasional guest appearances by the likes of centrist Republicans such as Jeb Bush and Lamar Alexander, this has mostly been an intramural fight. The key to making sense of this is that when Republicans have gotten into the ring—by overhauling collective bargaining (in Wisconsin) or passing universal Education Savings Accounts (in Nevada)—they've generally been met with unified opposition from reform and union Dems.“
The bigger picture:

“Finally, most Americans didn't think Trump had the temperament or character to be president—and yet 60 million still voted for him. For those who regard Obama and Clinton as enlightened, well-meaning, inclusive leaders, opposed only by crazies and ideologues, it's worth reflecting on why that might be.”

Bill Tozer

Federal government efforts to improve education have been dismal. Even if there were a constitutional basis for its involvement – which there isn’t – the federal government is simply ill-positioned to determine what education policies will best serve the diverse local communities across our vast nation.

The sooner we can acknowledge that improvements will not come from Washington, the sooner we’re likely to see students flourishing in learning environments that reflect their unique needs and desires.


Bill Tozer

Well, it looks like school reform will never happen. Can’t find a lefty of prominence that supports choice or raising standards. Thin Lizzy says every penny for education must remain in the waste land of public school. No vouchers, no escape.

Biden is on the same page. They all are. In fact, Biden wants to make it worse.

“Biden Vows to Ban Standardized Testing in Public Schools If Elected”

Heck, I would join the tin foil hat/eco-nut/sea salt only/Chem Trail crowd if I thought it would help public education.

Bill Tozer

In Pennsylvania, Democrats Fight a GOP Bill to Expand School Choice


Bill Tozer

More money will fix everything

Yesterday I asked the question, derived in part from a Poynter Institute article, “Do Journalists Know Less Than They Used To?”

The decline in education spending that occurred on the state level during the Great Recession (when state spending for all purposes was under pressure) has been reversed. Dean Pianta’s claim that “funding levels have failed to recover from this raid” is as flatly untrue as his now deleted claim that school funding since the 1980s had actually declined. Democracy may die in darkness at the Post, but truthfulness dies in the ignorance and laziness of newsrooms.

How does a dean of an education school not know this? How does a Washington Post editor not know how to check this out?

Well, behold, the Washington Post has offered this correction:

Correction: An earlier version of this piece stated that, adjusting for constant dollars, public funding for schools had decreased since the late 1980s. This is not the case. In fact, funding at the federal, state and local levels has increased between the 1980s and 2019.



,,,Sorry Bill,,,

If you are referring to me in your 730pm you are wrong again!!!

Another poor sufferer of Dougski Derangement Syndrome

George Rebane

re BillT 853am - Another Democrat Big Lie that actually means something in our daily affairs, and another one that goes unrepentant and unanswered by either the Left or their lamestream media pundits.

Bill Tozer

Solution: Get rid of standardized tests. The Bluer the City-State, the bigger the rate of failure.

“Over 140 NYC schools have grades with 90 percent state exam failure rate”

“With many of the city’s lowest-performing schools spending in excess of $30,000 annually per student, Chu called for urgent scrutiny of the Department of ­Education.

“What exactly is being taught in these classrooms?” she asked. “These kids are spending 35 hours a week or so in class. What is that time being used for? What is the curriculum?”

“There were 142 schools across the boroughs where more than 90 percent of students failed math or English tests.

“At the North Bronx School of Empowerment, 186 seventh graders took the state math test and just eight passed.

A total of 19 schools that had at least one class with a higher than 90-percent failure rate were part of the Renewal Schools program that poured millions of dollars into struggling schools in a last-ditch attempt to turn them around.”


Bill Tozer

From public education to research. The decline. Connect the dots.

How to Tackle the Unfolding Research Crisis


Bill Tozer

Competing news items from the world of science, first from Nature magazine:

Gee, I wonder why this might be?

Wa Compost reports this


“A new study adds to a growing body of research that suggests subtle differences in how women describe their discoveries may affect their career trajectories. Male authors were more likely to sprinkle words like “novel,” “unique” and “excellent” into the abstracts that summarize their scientific papers, compared to female authors. Such positively framed findings were more likely to be cited by peers later on, a key measure of the influence of a person’s research, according to the study published in the British Medical Journal. . .

An earlier study of economists, “Publishing While Female,” found that women faced higher editorial standards: “Their manuscripts are subject to greater scrutiny, spend longer under review and women, in turn, respond by conforming to those standards,” wrote Erin Hengel, an economist at the University of Liverpool.

“The cost to women of publishing a paper is much higher than it is for men: Female authors spend three to six months longer under review,” Hengel reported.

To borrow from Glenn Reynolds, why are academic science departments such hotbeds of sexism?

Chaser—perhaps a clue can be found here:


Convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein hobnobbed with some of the world’s leading scientists and thinkers, flying them on his private jet to a TED conference, socializing at exclusive soirees and spawning a web of financial relationships that have roiled two of the world’s most elite universities. . .

The upheaval has intensified as scholars debate publicly and among themselves whether gender biases and inequities in power within the academic culture may have helped protect and enable Epstein. . . The Epstein scandal is a reminder that despite progress, some circles may have been more accessible to a known criminal than to many women.

Of course, Epstein might have been able to have shed some light on all this if he hadn’t hung himself.

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