Saturday, December 06, 2008

Old School

Obama's union-loving education guru

by Seyward Darby - December 24th, 2008 (Publication Date) - The New Republic

In November, Barack Obama bewildered education reformers by tapping Linda Darling-Hammond, a Stanford professor who had advised his campaign, to oversee the transition's education policy team. Their verdict was swift and harsh. "Worst case scenario," wrote Mike Petrilli, vice president for national programs and policy at the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, an education think tank, the day after The Wall Street Journal leaked the news. "This is a sign that the president-elect isn't a bona fide reformer," he later told me. Kate Walsh, president of the National Council on Teacher Quality, confirmed, "The reform community is scared to death."

The highly politicized American school system is unlikely to reform with a union loving socialist touting leader like Linda Darling-Hammond. The 40 year plunge in education in America is certain to continue on its downward course with Darling-Hammond in charge.

I am reminded of the assessment by Thomas Sowell, few education unions in America look anything like America in their composition. Where America is 22% liberal, 44% moderate and 34% conservative, school teachers are 20% extreme leftists (Marxists-socialists, a tiny 1 to 2 % faction hidden within liberals in the greater American population, but an identifiably significant group among teachers), 40% liberal, 30% moderate and only 10% conservative.

The major point to note is that there are twice as many Marxists-socialists as there are conservatives among teachers, the total of liberal groups are over-represented by a factor of 3 times their proportion of the American population as a whole and even moderates are under represented by nearly a third. The American education system is a socialism touting political force. Education unions see their job as subverting the American belief in free enterprise and denigrating America's history and culture. For 40 years it has worked. A huge percentage of American students leave school unprepared to be useful and effective workers or citizens.

Teachers are mostly to blame, along with parents who don't see a politicized anti-American public school system as a serious problem for their children's future.


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