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Report Card

3:56 PM, May 7, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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It is the “Cubs Fail to Reach World Series” of news stories. American students are found to be doing poorly at their job which is, of course, learning. Today’s iteration of that story comes from Libby Nelson of Vox who reports:

The high school graduation rate might be at an all-time high, but less than half of American high school seniors are proficient in reading and math, according to new data released by the Education Department on Wednesday.

The story is so familiar that it barely registers, so perhaps it should be reworked and given a slight change of focus so that it isn’t the students who are failing, but the teachers and the educrats.  “Recent studies show that the education establishment fails half the people who are compelled to use its services."

How, after all, did these under-performers get promoted over and over again.  They somehow got to be seniors, one thinks, without anyone in the school noticing that they hadn’t learned anything?  

And what about the Department of Education which issued this report and has been around for a while now, doing its job – whatever that is – and spending several billion a year in the process? What exactly has it accomplished in that time if the kids whose education is, notionally, its responsibility are still underperforming?  We know it can produce reports. But what are its other accomplishments?

These findings, which have been lying around in plain sight for years now, will be used to make a case for more money for education and, of course, the Department. And we will be told that we need more of this and increased that so that the same people and organizations who have let all those students down so badly can shortchange another generation at even greater expense.

Watch and see if this report does not become, somehow, an exhibit in the education establishment’s case for Common Core.

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